Rarely does the politics of Tamil Nadu play out in the tiny Union territory of Pondicherry. The Congress or its offspring, the NR Congress, calls the shots in this former French colony with just about 20 lakh voters—smaller than many municipalities in Tamil Nadu.
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The BJP’s first political move here was to appoint Kiran Bedi as Lt. Governor, who remained in a constant state of war with Congress chief minister V. Narayanasamy. Finally, the BJP delivered the coup de grace—triggering a spate of walk-outs from the precariously positioned Congress government, leading to its resignation and imposition of President’s rule.
The BJP had hoped that its nominee and defector-in-chief—former PWD minister E. Namasivvayam—could be projected as the CM candidate. But it did not expect its...