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The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) secured two -third majority in the elections to the Northern Province Council in Sri Lanka held on Saturday.

The TNA which is registered as Illankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi (ITAK) obtained 353,595 votes which is 78% of the total votes cast in the first provincial council election after 25 years in de-merged north.

The ruling UPFA however managed only 82,838 votes (18%) and the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress 6,761 votes (1.5%).

The TNA won 30 out of 38 seats (28 direct and 2 bonus seats) while the ruling United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) got seven seats and the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) won one seat.

The TNA will therefore form the first post-war provincial administration in the region earlier under the control of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) until it was militarily defeat in May 2009.

“We have got decisive victory. This proves people are definitely with us. This a clear mandate by the voters. This must be properly understood by the Sri Lankan government as well as India and other international community,” TNA MP and spokesperson Suresh Premachandran told TOI.

“Though, we are under the army occupation, army worked for the ruling alliance candidates, people showed their strong support to the TNA,” he added.

The TNA pulled off a surprising win in the government ally EPDP-dominated island of Kayts off the Jaffna Peninsula, beating the UPFA by 4,753 votes. The Jaffna islands are traditionally strong support bases of the government’s key ally, led by Minister Douglas Devananda.

“Despite heavy army presence, blatant violations, voter intimidation and violence against our candidates, we secured a great victory. We bow to the Tamil people here,” Sumanthiran, another TNA MP, said.

In Mullaitivu district, the TNA secured 27,620 votes, while the UPFA obtained 7,063 votes and the SLMC received 199 votes in the district.