The BJP did not contest on its own and it did so as a part of the AIADMK-led NDA, but the fact remains that the saffron party’s candidates won by contesting on their Lotus symbol.
Having grown from nil seats in 2016 to four in 2021 is a significant leap for the saffron party. It must also be remembered that the BJP State President came a close second in Dharapuram, missing out by a little over 1300 votes.
C.Saraswathi from Modakurichi, M.R.Gandhi from Nagercoil, Vanathi Srinivasan from Coimbatore South and Nainar Nagendran from Tirunelveli are the four lawmakers who will be representing the BJP in the State Assembly.
Prior to this, it was in 1996 that the BJP had one legislator in the Tamil Nadu assembly, followed by 2001, when they had four legislators.
Following their victory, Tamil Nadu BJP President L. Murugan reminisced how he had vowed to make the Lotus bloom in Tamil Nadu, when he had taken over as the party’s State president in early 2020. “BJP legislators will be standing tall in the midst of detractors who kept saying that the Lotus will not bloom in Tamil Nadu” he recalled his 2020 vow, saying that it has been fulfilled.
Notably, BJP’s National Women’s Wing President Vanathi Srinivasan secured her victory against actor Kamal Haasan who made his debut in the Assembly polls, after launching his party Makkal Needhi Maiam, three year ago.
Haasan was the main ray of hope for the fledgling party, as the MNM had only been showing promise in his constituency during the counting. However, by around 10pm on Sunday night, their hopes were dashed by BJP’s candidate.
In the 2016 Assembly polls, the BJP had contested on its own against the DMK and AIADMK, but failed to secure even a single seat, whereas Jayalalithaa’s AIADMK defeated M. Karunanidhi’s DMK and broke a 30-year old record to storm back to power for a second consecutive term.