Beyond livening up the political scene in Tamil Nadu and creating a buzz that has all the other political parties in the state worried, the recent statements by Kamal Haasan and Rajinikanth may not end up in anything substantial.
For the BJP the situation is a win-win. It sends a signal to the ruling AIADMK and CM Edappadi Palanisamy not to take the BJP for granted. It also embarrasses the DMK whose leaders were using strong language against PM Modi until a few weeks ago.
The Madras High Court, hearing a plea on the matter on September 13, took a tough stand against illegal hoardings and wondered "how many more litres of blood the state government needs to paint the roads with."
A fortnight back when Chief Minister Palaniswami left for the UK, he was just the ‘lucky first among the many equals’ in the AIADMK. On his return, the ‘accidental chief minister’ has become the ‘revolutionary leader’s heir’!
The roots of the caste bands run deep into the murky world of electoral politics and this is why most political leaders are not ready to ruffle feathers by banning ‘caste markers’.
“Every...closed society has a cant of its own. Tamil memes are a reflection of an insular society trying to close a system inwards instead of extending its cultural borrowings,” said N Kalyan Raman, writer and translator.
The two Dravidian majors – the ruling AIADMK and the principal opposition DMK — never miss out an opportunity to have a go at the other. While the AIADMK is employing mithai to target the DMK, the latter is using halwa to attack the other.
Even after the bypolls, the AIADMK government is surviving with a wafer-thin margin in the Legislative Assembly
The AIADMK currently has two top posts of co-cordinator and coordiantor held by Chief Minister K Palaniswami and his deputy O Panneerselvam.
NDA allies who won big will be hoping to get important portfolios in the Union Cabinet. At the same time, the outcome of the BJP opening lines with non-NDA parties will have to be seen.
Caste-based vote banks seem to have taken a hit, but religion-driven vote banks are catching all the eyeballs.
The BJP has routed out the Congress across the nation. Ironically, it is the BJP and its style of campaigning that helped the Congress and the Congress-led UDF win 19 of the 20 Lok Sabha seats in Kerala.
"People at the All-India level wanted Narendra Modi to continue as the Prime Minister and people in Tamil Nadu wanted the Amma (Jayalalithaa) regime to continue. This is what the poll verdict says," he told reporters.
The southern state saw the DMK wave rising like a Tsunami that swept aside the political fortunes of state BJP bigwigs.
Trends in the counting of votes polled in the April 18 elections indicate a possibility of victory in only two of the 20 Parliamentary constituencies AIADMK contested, of the total 38 in the state.
AIADMK would require a significant number of seats to remain in power even as rival leader, AMMK founder T T V Dhinakaran, has threatened to play spoilsport to Palaniswami's chances to continue in power.
AIADMK Coordinator O Panneerselvam and Joint Coordinator K Palaniswami said in a statement that agents must follow a slew of steps, including reaching the counting centres as early as 6 AM on May 23.
Palaniswami exuded confidence that the party and its allies win would all the seats in the state and one in Puducherry, adding that said exit polls were more of "imposing of opinion".
Of the 22 assembly seats going for a bypoll in Tamil Nadu, the ruling AIADMK has to win at least four seats. If not, it will lose its majority in the House.
The encouraging sex ratio and the enthusiasm of the women voters in Tamil Nadu was not reflected in the fact that nearly every political party was not serious about fielding women candidates.
On April 18, by-polls to 18 Assembly segments in the state were held along with elections to 38 Lok Sabha seats.
Tamil Nadu is particularly an important state to watch out for, as it goes to polls for the first time since the death of AIADMK chief Jayalalithaa and DMK supremo Karunanidhi.
Will the NDA’s alliance arithmetic overcome anti-incumbency in Tamil Nadu? May 23rd will provide the answers.
There are many indicators that show why it will be difficult to predict a winner this time.
The actor-turned-politician will launch his campaign with just a day ahead of the close of electioneering for the April 18 elections to 39 Lok Sabha constituencies in Tamil Nadu.