BJP fails to open its account in Kerala despite Sabarimala agitation, show trends; LDF set to create history
Thiruvananthapuram, May 02: In Kerala, the ruling CPI(M)-led Left Democratic Front is all set to retain power as it is leading in at least 94 of the 140 assembly seats as counting is still in progress.
In a setback to BJP, the state president K Surendran is also trailing against CPM candidate KU Jenish Kumar in the Konni assembly seat that was at the heart of the recent Sabarimala movement. As per election commission data, Surendran has got 18204 votes so far while incumbent MLA Jenish Kumar has secured 35412 votes so far.
In Pathanamthitta, the ground zero of Sabarimala agitation, the CPI (M) led LDF is leading in all five seats. The Pathanamthitta district constitutes five seats- Konni, Adoor, Thiruvalla, Aranmula, Ranni, which is currently held by the CPI (M) led LDF. Going by current leads, LDF will retain all five seats.
The hill temple and the surrounding area were rocked by violence after the LDF government facilitated protection to women devotees after the Supreme Court order allowed the entry of women between the ages of 10 and 50 into the Sabarimala temple.
With Vijayan managing to steer the Left bloc for a successive term, LDF will be bucking the over four decade-old trend of swinging between the Communists and the Congress- headed UDF in the southern state.
If the Pinarayi Vijayan-led government comes back to power in Kerala, it will set a precedent -- after the 1970s, the people of Kerala have not voted a chief minister or party back to power.
As per the Election Commission (EC) figures, the ruling front is ahead in 85 seats, UDF in 44and the BJP-led NDA in three constituencies.
Senior Congress leaders, including Ramesh Chennithala, Chandy, Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan and P T Thomas established leads, but many front candidates are facing an uphill task.
Menawhile, the BJP continued to maintain its lead in Palakkad, where it has fielded ''Metroman'' E Sreedharan.
The 88-year-old technocrat is ahead of his nearest rival and two-time sitting MLA, Shafi Parambil by over 4,000 votes.
Senior BJP leader and former Mizoram Governor, Kummanam Rajasekharan and actor-turned-Rajya Sabha MP, Suresh Gopi are also leading in Nemom and Thrissur constituencies respectively.