All you wanted to Know about Tamil Nadu Politics

I was visiting Chennai Madras as it was then, in the Christmas of 1987, when MGR died and the city combusted in mourning. A few of my cousins had their vehicles beaten up and chased away by mourners (why? I have never fathomed ). And, then began the tussle for power – there was Janki and Jayalalitha fighting for control of the party. I remember an Uncle saying, with a disgusted nod, “in the land of the Pandyas and Cholas, Kamaraj and Anna – a wife and a mistress are fighting for power – is there no one else ?

Tamil politics has always fascinated me – at one level deeply emotive and personality driven, at another level – highly development focused. It is one State where the key National Players are absent. It is also a State, where the main State level players don’t show any desire to leave the boundaries of the State and spread their wings. These parties also seem to form alliances with the National players depending on convinience rather than any ideological mooring. Both state parties have been in alliance with both National parties :

So who are these parties, what do they stand for and what makes them win or lose ?

Nilakantan Rajaraman, Anand Krishnamoorthy and Chandrachoodan Gopalakrishnan – look at the complex world of Tamil Politics and what drives the politicians (apart from profit motive) through weekly podcasts called Puram the Body Politic

In the first episode they look  at the major players in the Tamil Political Scene, the Parties and the set of events that led to the Indian National Congress taking a back seat in the State.

In the second episode they look at the last decade of elections and voting trends that may help understand what could happen this time around.  a fascinating analysis..

When you hear stuff like this, you realise how lazy journalism as a profession has become … i wish there was stuff out of Calcutta that talks about the various parties, equations and analysis. One from Assam … Not the outsider trying to act ‘in the know’ the situation – but people who live in the State and have follow the system being knowledgeable about something they know about..

the podcasts make for interesting listening while driving. It is intelligent, doesn’t treat listeners like fools and sprinkled with a dry sense of humour .. look forward to more ..



  1. Author

    A new party Bharat Swabhimaan led by Swamiji(Dev Ram) is on rise. I would like your post/comment on its political future and its impact as well. It’s worth to note that Kiran Bedi, Anna Hazare like personalities are associated with it. I was surprised to see Bapu’s pics in party’s banners, recently in Delhi. I still remember Swamiji words “It’s shame to have Gandhi as “Rastrapita” ( I was then in Jharkhand, same state where he told it)

  2. Author

    Jayalalithaa seems to have Death Wish: Virtually Gifting a landslide win to the DMK?

    The MDMK, a long time ally of AIADMK, has walked out of their alliance. Even assuming MDMK had remained within the AIADMK flock, the formidability of its rival – the DMK re-constituted alliance – is so comprehensive that it had a two digit lead, assuming the 2009 Lok Sabha performance as a baseline. This gave the DMK Alliance a vote share of around 53% and AIADMK alliance around 44%. With the exit of MDMK, the vote share of AIADMK at start up of the campaign falls to 41.33% – trailing their rival by a whopping 12-13%.

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