Rebels continue to stay
Thiruvananthapuram, Apr 7 (UNI) Rebels continue to pose threats to both the ruling United Democratic Front and the Left Democratic Front by remaining in the electoral fray even after the withdrawal of nominations today.
Former Forest Minister A Neelalohithadasan Nadar, who was suspended from the Janata Dal(S), remained in the contest as an Independent after he was denied ticket from Kovalam. He is likely to upset the prospects of the LDF candidate there.
Mr K K Nair of the Congress, who represented Pathanamthitta eight times, was also in the fray against the official candidate after K Sivadasan Nair was given the seat.
Another constituency where the rebel posed a threat to the official candidate is Thiruvananthapuram West. KPCC executive member T Saratchandra Prasad refused to withdraw his nomination as an Independent in the constituency where he is pitted against Congress ally Democratic Indira Congress (Karunakaran) candidate Shobana George.
Election Commission sources said a total of 409 candidates are in the fray for the first phase of Assembly polls on April 22 after 51 candidates withdrew their nominations today.
They said about 620 candidates had filed their nominations for the second phase of polls on April 29, when nominations closed today.
Former Union Minister O Rajagopal (BJP) from Palakkad and Communist Party of India (Marxist) Central Committee member Kodiyeri Balakrishnan from Thalassery were the prominent candidates, who filed their nominations on the last day.
The elections in the state will be held in three phases.
In the first phase 59 constituencies in Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Idukki and Kottayam districts would go to the polls. The second phase will see elections in 66 constituencies in Kozhikode, Wayanad, Malappuram, Palakkad, Thrissur and Ernakulam districts. The third phase would be in the two districts of Kannur and Kasaragode on May 3.
The counting of votes would take place on May 11.
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