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Last Updated Wednesday October 21 2020 04:17 AM IST

This is how CPM, Cong, BJP hope to win Chengannur bypoll

G Ragesh
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This is how CPM, Cong, BJP hope to win Chengannur bypoll

Chengannur: The voters of Chengannur have made up their mind for the byelection to be held on Monday and all the three major political parties in the race have their calculations ready.

The CPM-led LDF, Congress-led UDF and BJP-led NDA have all put up a face of confidence even at the last minute as their candidates spent the final day of campaigning meeting prominent people, attending prayer meets and family functions and visiting houses where deaths occured.

Will improve margin: CPM

The CPM, fighting to retain the seat held by its K K Ramachandran Nair, expects to win the seat by a margin of 8,000-10,000 votes, a source in the party said. Nair won the 2016 Assembly polls by a margin of 7,983. The CPM hopes to improve its vote share this time. Asked about the factors favouring them , the CPM leader told Onmanorama that they were confident that the development projects initiated by Nair would help them. The party has been projecting its candidate Saji Cherian as one who is capable of taking off the constituency's development to new heights. The CPM, in its manifesto, claims that development projects worth Rs 750 crore were initiated during the short tenure of Nair. The bypoll was necessitated by the sudden demise of Nair.

The CPM exudes confidence that all communities would vote for it in a bid to stop BJP making gains. They also assess that the developments in Karnataka where the Congress had to make an alliance with the JD(S) and keep their legisltors confined to resorts to stop poaching bid by the BJP have damaged the grand old party's image in Chengannur. The CPM calculates that it would lead in all the 10 panchayats in the constituency. However, it is doubtful about coming on top in Chengannur municipality which is a fortress of the UDF. The municipality stood with the UDF even as the BJP came ahead in several other local bodies.

Aala, Budhanoor, Cheriyanadu, Mannar, Mulakkuzha, Puliyoor, Venmani, Chennithala and Thripperunthura are the panchayats where the Left front led last time.

Will regain lost votes: Cong

The UDF, for which a comeback in the assembly segment is a matter of political survival, pins its hopes on the possible consolidation of Hindu votes in favour of its candidate D Vijayakumar. Vijayakumar's association with the Akhila Bharatha Ayyappa Seva Sangham is believed

to be a major factor behind his candidature. In 2016, when BJP made huge gains (42,682 votes as against 6062 in 2011), the Congress was at the receiving end. Congress' votes came down to 44,897 in 2016 from 65,156 in 2011.

"This time we hope to win by a margin of 3,000-5,000 votes," a UDF leader in charge of the front's campaign told Onmanorama. The party hopes that a major portion of the Nair votes would poll in favour of Vijayakumar. The Nair community constitutes 24 per cent of the population of Chengannur constituency. The party had put up a strong campaigning as it is so desperate to wrest the seat. The UDF hopes that there will be a dip of at least 10,000 votes in BJP's share. The

front cites the non-cooperation of ally BDJS in BJP's campaign as the reason. UDF sources said the front would lead in seven panchayats. It had come ahead of the other fronts only in Pandanad panchayat and Chengannur municipality last time.

Modi wave on: BJP

The BJP has forecast a winning margin bigger than the numbers predicted by the rival fronts. The party-led NDA hopes to emerge victorious by a margin of 10,000-12,000 votes. Sources in the BJP rubbished the rivals' claim that it would lose BDJS votes. "The SNDP union in Chengannur has offered us all support and we will get all the votes from the ezhava community that we got last time," the leader said. Claiming an upper hand in campaigning, the leader said the NDA would lead in seven panchayats, without naming them.

In 2016, the front had come ahead in Thiruvanvandoor panchayat and second in Puliyoor, Budhanoor, Cheriynadu and Venmani panchayats. The party claims that the people would vote for it since they have realized the "unholy nexus" between the Congress and the CPM at the national and regional levels. It also claims that the Modi wave is very much alive and will attract more votes to its kitty this time.

The NDA has fielded veteran BJP leader P S Sreedharan Pillai, who had showcased the stunning performance in 2016.

Chengannur verdict 2011

P C Vishnunath (Congress) - 65,156 votes

C S Sujatha (CPM) - 52,656

B Radhakrishna Menon (BJP) - 6062

2016

K K Ramachandran Nair (CPM) - 52,880

P C Vishnunath (Congress) - 44,897

P S Sreedharan Pillai (BJP) - 42,682

Sobhana George (independent) - 3,966

Ramachandran Nair won by 7,983 votes

Panchayat-wise results in 2016

Mannar

LDF - 6,536

UDF - 6,096

BJP - 5,431

LDF led by 440 votes

Pandanad

LDF - 2,328

UDF - 2,616

BJP - 2,250

UDF led by 288 votes

Thiruvanvandoor

LDF - 2,375

UDF - 3,547

BJP - 3,603

BJP led by 29 votes

Mulakkuzha

LDF - 7,697

UDF - 5,406

BJP - 4,317

LDF led by 2,291 votes

Aala

LDF - 3,298

UDF - 2,858

BJP - 2,229

LDF led by 440 votes

Puliyoor

LDF - 3,606

UDF - 3,063

BJP - 3,304

LDF led by 543 votes

Budhanoor

LDF - 5,151

UDF - 3,479

BJP - 3,557

LDF led by 1,594 votes

Chennithala-Thripperunthura

LDF - 6,666

UDF - 5,599

BJP - 5,092

LDF led by 1,067 votes

Cheriyanadu

LDF - 5,491

UDF - 3,503

BJP - 4,377

LDF led by 1,114 votes

Venmani

LDF - 4,906

UDF - 3,611

BJP - 4,248

LDF led by 658 votes

Chengannur municipality

LDF - 4,591

UDF - 4,992

BJP - 4,182

UDF led by 401 votes

Postal votes

LDF - 235

UDF - 100

BJP - 92

LDF led by 135

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