Thiruvananthapuram: The three candidates in the fray to the three Rajya Sabha seats that fell vacant from Kerala were declared elected by Assembly Secretary S V Unnikrishnan Nair on Friday.
The three are Indian Union Muslim League leader P V Abdul Wahab who was renominated by his party, while the other two, backed by the ruling CPM, are new faces - John Brittas, the Managing Director of of the party-backed Kairali TV channel, and V Sivadasan.
The CPM nominees were handpicked by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.
Before the Kairali TV channel was launched in the late 1990s, Brittas was the bureau chief of the party organ 'Deshabhimani' and was posted in Delhi.
Brittas had also left Kairali TV to join its archrival Asianet TV, but returned after a while.
Appointed media advisor to Pinarayi soon after the latter became the Chief Minister in 2016, he quit the post just before the notification for the April 6 Assembly polls was issued, signalling that he might be a candidate from a CPM bastion in Kannur, but it did not happen.
Sivadasan is also a close confidant of Pinarayi and he rose in the party through student politics and was a previous national president of the Students Federation of India. He is presently a member of the powerful state Committee of the CPM and works from the state party headquarters here.
The three fresh vacancies arose as the tenure of Congress veteran Vayalar Ravi, Indian Union Muslim League leader Abdul Wahab and CPM leader K K Raghesh ended on April 21.
Incidentally, the Election Commission, after initially announcing the date of the poll, decided to cancel it as a new Kerala Assembly would be there soon after May 2, but the Kerala unit of the CPM took the matter to the court and the poll panel had to backtrack and go ahead with the poll.
(with inputs from IANS)