Explained: What are the 13 parties in MK Stalin-led Secular Progressive Alliance in Tamil Nadu?

Led by the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), the Secular Progressive Alliance in Tamil Nadu comprises the Indian National Congress, Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi, Communist Party of India, Communist Party of India (Marxist), Indian Union Muslim League, Manithaneya Makkal Katchi, Kongunadu Makkal Desia Katchi, Aathi Thamizhar Peravai, All India Forward Bloc, Aathi Thamizhar Peravai, Makkal Viduthalai Katchi, and Tamizhaga Vazhvurimai Katchi.

The sixteenth legislative assembly election of Tamil Nadu is scheduled to be held on 6 April to elect Members of the Legislative Assembly from 234 constituencies in the state.

DMK

Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam supremo and alliance’s chief ministerial candidate MK Stalin will seek a third term from the Kolathur constituency while his son Udhayanidhi is set to make his electoral debut as the party is contesting in 173 constituencies.

In the 2016 Assembly polls, DMK has won 89 seats while following the 2019 general election, it emerged as the third-largest party in the Lok Sabha with 24 seats.

Congress

After hard negotiations that stretched over weeks, Congress managed to get 25 seats with the DMK opening the dialogue with an offer of 18, increasing it to 22, and closing the deal at 25 segments. The Congress is now contesting in 25 Assembly seats and in the byelection to the Kanniyakumari Lok Sabha seat.

MDMK

Vaiko’s Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) is contesting 6 seats on the rising sun symbol of its partner DMK. With this, the MDMK will, for the first time, contest in an Assembly election as part of the DMK-led front. Coming out of the DMK headquarters, Vaiko created the MDMK after he quit the DMK in 1994.

CPI(M)

Communist Party of India (Marxist) is contesting in 6 Assembly constituencies. Here are the profiles of the candidates.

CPI

The Communist Party of India (CPI) announced its list of candidates for six seats it is contesting in the alliance. The CPI has fielded veteran leader Marimuthu for the Thiruthuraipoondi (Reserve) constituency. 

VCK

Thol. Thirumavalavan’s Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi (VCK), formerly known as the Dalit Panthers of India, is contesting in six seats. In the 2016 assembly elections, VCK contested as part of a third front along with other parties including MDMK and Left parties but didn’t win a seat. They joined hands with the DMK in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections and were allotted two seats: Thirumavalavan and D Ravikumar were elected.

IUML

The Indian Union Muslim League is contesting in three seats. The party will contest under the ladder symbol.  In the 2016 Tamil Nadu assembly elections, IUML contested on 5 seats and won only 1 seat. Among its candidates, the Muslim League has chosen party’s sitting MLA and state general secretary K.A.M Muhammed Abubacker to fight from Kadayanallur.

MMK

M. H. Jawahirullah’s Manithaneya Makkal Katchi (MMK) has field its candidates in Manapparai and Papanasam constituiencies.  In 2011, the MMK allied with the AIADMK in the state assembly polls, however in 2016 it switched to the DMK. In 2011, Jawahirullah won in Ramanathapuram and A. Aslam Basha did so in Ambur.

TVK

Tamizhaga Vazhvurimai Katchi (TVK), founded by former PMK MLA T. Velmurugan, got a seat in the alliance and will contest on DMK symbol. Party president T. Velmurugan is the candidate in Panruti constituency.

KMDK

E.R.Eswaran’s Kongunadu Makkal Desia Katchi (KMDK) is contesting in three seats. The party’s vote base is mainly concentrated in western districts of Tamil Nadu and it has one Member of Parliament from Namakkal Lok Sabha constituency.

AIFB

The All India Forward Bloc, a left party is only contesting in one seat.  The party has fielded P.V. Kathiravan, a former MLA from the Usilampatti constituency.

ATP

Aathi Thamizhar Peravai (ATP), an Arunthathiyar movement founded by Athiyamaan is contesting in one seat for Tamil Nadu assembly polls.

MVK

SK Murugavel Rajan-led Makkal Viduthalai Katchi (MVK), is contesting only one seat on the DMK’s rising sun symbol.