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Vijay Makkal Iyakkam makes a grand entry in rural local body polls

The performance comes as a surprise in the state’s political arena as even the veteran actor-turned-politician Kamal Haasan’s party Makkal Needhi Maiam or filmmaker-politician Seeman’s Naam’s Tamizhar Katchi failed to open their accounts.

Written by Janardhan Koushik | Chennai |
Updated: October 14, 2021 10:41:28 am
The number of seats Vijay fans contested or won in the village panchayat wards may appear insignificant as compared to the total 27,003 local body positions in the state but the taste of victory on debut may lead to a bigger role for the actor in state politics. (File)

The Tamil Nadu rural local body election has provided the much-needed booster for actor Vijay’s fans who are awaiting their leader’s political entry. The members associated with Thalapathy Vijay Makkal Iyakkam, (TVMI) the fan club of the actor, have won more than 100 seats in the polls.

The performance comes as a surprise in the state’s political arena as even the veteran actor-turned-politician Kamal Haasan’s party Makkal Needhi Maiam or filmmaker-politician Seeman’s Naam’s Tamizhar Katchi failed to open their accounts.

The TVMI members have put out a significant performance across all the nine districts, especially in Kallakurichi, Kancheepuram, Villupuram.

Bussy N Anand, the general-secretary of the Iyakkam, said a total of 169 candidates contested in the election and 121 of them have won.

He said he visited all the nine districts before the polls and he was pretty confident that people would vote for their Iyakkam members. “In Vanur panchayat union of Villupuram district, Savitri, who belongs to TVMI has been elected as the panchayat president. The response has been amazing. Women, youth and children have got great admiration towards Thalapathy,” he said.

The performance is further significant because neither the actor nor his fan club had openly campaigned for their members. In September, reports emerged that a meeting took place at the head office in Panaiyur and in the meeting, the members were provided a green signal to contest in the local body polls independently. In Madurai, posters were put up by the Madurai South wing members of TVMI which read, “We are coming in 2021 local body polls, we will provide good governance in 2026 (state assembly polls).”

A senior member of Vijay’s fan club said they are pleased with the results but this is just the starting point and they have a long road ahead. “We just got permission to use the flag and the picture and with that itself, we are able to win more than 100 seats. If our Thalapathy had campaigned, we would have even swept the elections. Even bigger political parties have got fewer seats than us, the people of Tamil Nadu are trusting our Thalapathy and the results are a testament to that. Like us, the public also are awaiting his entry to politics,” Bussy said.

TVMI members are likely to contest in the upcoming urban local body polls scheduled to take place in a couple of months. The formula of Vijay, testing the strength of his base in the local body election, is akin to actor and DMDK president Captain Vijayakanth.

Before floating his party in 2005, he made the members of his rasigar mandram (fan club) contest in the local body polls. Many of them emerged victorious amid the two Dravidian heavyweights DMK and AIADMK which provided the push to Vijayakanth to launch the party and contest the polls individually in the 2006 assembly polls.

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