Will Tamil Nadu see a political change on Friday?

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Chennai, May 12: Ending a month-long suspense, Tamil Nadu will know on Friday, May 13 who will rule the state for the next five years as the votes polled in the April 13 Assembly elections will be counted at 91 centres across the state.

The fate of 2,773 candidates including arch-rivals DMK and AIADMK chiefs M Karunanidhi and J Jayalalithaa respectively will be known with the results of the fiercely fought elections to the 234-member Assembly expecting to be out by tomorrow evening.

DMK is seeking a second successive term and AIADMK itching to return to power after a five-year hiatus during which various issues including the 2G spectrum scam surfaced.

75.21 per cent of the voters had exercised their franchise in the recently-concluded state polls, which saw the Election Commission cracking the whip on political parties to check irregularities, particularly use of money power to woo voters, prompting contrasting reactions from the two major Dravidian parties.

DMK patriarch Karunanidhi had launched a scathing attack against the EC, which had adopted many tough measures to prevent flow of money, even calling for curtailing its powers.

His bete noire Jayalalithaa, on the other hand, had never let even a slight opportunity to knock at the EC's doors.

The electoral outcome would come at a time when the probe into 2G spectrum allocation scam has reached the DMK first family with Karunanidhi's daughter and DMK Rajya Sabha member Kanimozhi been chargesheeted by CBI as a co-conspirator with former telecom minister A Raja in the case.

While Raja has been lodged in Tihar jail for his alleged role in the scam, the fate of Kanimozhi will be decided on May 14 when a Delhi court delivers its order on her bail plea.

In the event of DMK retaining power, 87-year-old Karunanidhi is likely to assume charge as chief minister for his sixth term in the wake of simmering succession war between his sons M K Stalin and M K Alagiri. 

PTI

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