Congress 10, DMK+ 29 seats: Tamil Nadu poll pact

Chennai: A day after the AIADMK and the BJP finalised their alliance and decided on the seat sharing deal, the DMK and Congress in Tamil Nadu sealed the seat-sharing deal for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. The announcement was made by DMK’s MK Stalin in Chennai.
DMK’s MK Stalin said Congress will contest from 10 Lok Sabha seats; nine in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry’s lone seat.
The Congress had earlier indicated that it would have wanted 16 of the 40 Lok Sabha seats – 39 of Tamil Nadu and one of Puducherry – but the senior alliance partner, DMK, did not play along. The DMK believes that it is poised to win elections in the state and letting the Congress take too many seats would spoil its chances.
Stalin, who is in talks with other smaller partners, did not specify how many seats the DMK would get to keep. But he underlined that the DMK-Congress talks had moved in a very transparent fashion. “It is a transparent pact held at the DMK headquarters, rather than in secrecy at a private hotel,” he said, in a dig at Team AIADMK-BJP which finalised its alliance at a hotel.
DMK’s Rajya Sabha MP and women’s wing secretary Kanimozhi Karunanidhi, and DMK principal principal secretary TR Baalu are representing the DMK while KS Alagiri, along with former ministers EVKS Elangovan and KV Thangabalu are negotiating for the Congress, sources said.
Both DMK and the Congress failed to win any Lok Sabha seat in Tamil Nadu in the 2014 general elections.
The DMK is also in talks with the CPI and CPI(M), Vaiko’s MDMK, Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi (VCK- a Dalit party) and Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) to include them in the alliance.
“DMK would contest from 25 to 28 seats. It may ask VCK and MDMK to contest with its Rising Sun symbol. Both the Left parties and IUML would contest on their own symbols,” said a DMK functionary.