TN Rajya Sabha polls: Who are the nominees of MK Stalin and will P Chidambaram win a seat?

In the wake of the Rajya Sabha polls, the political parties in Tamil Nadu are making a move to have their representation in the Upper House of the Parliament. Though the two major parties have accommodated several outfits in their alliance, both DMK and ADMK would have a comfortable victory with their numbers in the assembly.  

The Rajya Sabha polls will be held next month and the ruling DMK has on Sunday- May 15 announced its candidates. In an official statement, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and DMK President MK Stalin has named three candidates for the Rajya Sabha polls while allotting a seat for its ally, the Congress party. Six Rajya Sabha seats will fall vacant in the state and of these six vacancies, DMK and ADMK have three members each.

As per the current tally in the assembly, the DMK and its alliance can win four seats unopposed while ADMK can grab two seats to its kitty. The DMK has announced that of those three current candidates, the party would retain the candidacy of KRN Rajeshkumar, who was elected unopposed to the upper house last year in a by-poll. The two other members - TKS Elangovan and RS Bharathi won't be given another term and to replace them, MK Stalin has named two new candidates.

The two new candidates are- Thanjai Su Kalyanasundaram, a party veteran and district secretary of Thanjavur north district, and R Girirajan, the party's legal wing secretary. The DMK has awarded one seat to the Congress party, as agreed during the 2021 state assembly polls. A race has begun in the Congress party to win that one seat and according to reports, veteran Congress leader and former union minister P Chidambaram eyes to enter the Rajya Sabha for the first time from Tamil Nadu by grabbing this one seat.

The functionaries who are backing Chidambaram expect that he would win the seat. The former Union minister was elected from Maharashtra to the Rajya Sabha in 2016 and his term ends in July 2022. It must be noted that Chidambaram had recently met Chief Minister MK Stalin and sought support for his candidature to the Rajya Sabha. 

While winning three seats in the Rajya Sabha would keep the total strength of DMK intact with ten members, Tamil Nadu's main opposition ADMK would see its strength declining. The ADMK, which now has five members in the upper house, would have four members after the polls. ADMK's three members A Navaneethakrishnan, SR Balasubramoniyan, and A Vijayakumar are at the end of their tenure and with no surprise, the ADMK would see yet another episode of political crisis to announce its final candidates. 

It has been reported that two former ADMK Ministers would get a ticket to the upper house this time while several senior leaders are also making moves to reserve their berths. The Election Commission of India (ECI) has issued notifications for the Rajya Sabha polls on May 12 and along with Tamil Nadu, over 50 seats in 15 states would go for the polls from June to August as their terms are set to expire.