An anti incumbancy wave is seemed to have hit the dream of AIADMK candidate and party city district secretary KV Ramalingam to get hat trick victory in Erode West.
He won from the segment in 2011 poll by defeating M Yuvaraja (Cong) and Social Muthusamy (DMK) in 2016 poll.
Muthusamy, who was a minister in both MGR and Jayalalithaa (2001-06) cabinets and won from Erode and Bhavani during their period, faced defeat in Erode East in 2011 poll as DMK candidate.
So, he faced 2 successive defeat after joining DMK. Now, he tries his luck for 3rd time at the age of 72. In MGR and Jayalalithaa rules, he did a lot for the development of the district. But, over 30000 new voters did not know it.
The aged voters alone recall his services.
Now, he banks on a strong alliance and a discreet anti incumbancy wave against ruling party to get victory.
Though there is no major allegation against Ramalingam, who held PWD portfolio for 4 years in Jayalalithaa rule (2011-16), was grilled by voters in some areas during poll campaign for not fulfilling some demands. Erode West constituency has the highest number of voters in Erode district.
It includes many add on areas of Erode Corporation and Chithode and Nasiyanur town panchayats, Vadamugam Vellodu, Pungambadi, Goun dachipalayam, Tenmugam Vellodu and Mukashi Pulavampalayam villages in the Perundurai Taluk.
In the Erode Taluk, it has Ellapalayam, Elavamalai, Mettunasuvampalayam, Perodu, Nochchipalayam, Gangapuram, Ellapalayam, Villarasampatti, Melthindal, Keelthindal, Kathirampatti, Rayapalayam, Mettukkadai, Koorapalayam, Thottani, Puthurputhupalayam, Nanjathampalayam, Nanjathampalayam villages.
50 per cent of the electorate is dependent on agriculture and 50 per cent on dyeing, leather and textile industries. The segment, created in 2008, has the highest number of voters out of 8 constituencies in Erode district.
There are 142913 male voters, 148393 female voters and 30 transgender voters totalling 291316 voters. In the last 2016 election, KV Ramalingam won by 4,906 votes more than DMK candidate S. Muthusamy.
Ramalingam cited implementation of Rs 500 crore Ooratchikottai drinking water project for Erode Corporation as a major achievement of AIADMK rule.
The segment had 45 per cent Kongu Vellala Goundars, followed Scheduled Castes, Mudaliars, Nadars and members of the minority community.
Both the candidates were Goundars. Unresolved issues: Action should be taken to get a fair price for turmeric, turmeric based industries, cold storage units to protect turmeric, CETPs to solve textile and tannery effluent pollution problem, etc.
The promises to make Erode CN College as government college, establish CETPs, widening Chithodu road were not yet fulfilled. The constituency has about 30,000 young voters between the ages of 18 and 21.