Boost for Vijayan as Left ahead in Kerala local polls

In the municipalities, the UDF is leading in 45, the LDF is 35 while the BJP is ahead in four.
Pinarayi Vijayan

Thiruvananthapuram: Despite facing a host of controversies ahead of the civic body polls, Kerala’s ruling CPI-M-led Left Democratic Front was ahead of its rivals as counting of votes reached its final stages on Wednesday, and Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan appears to be on a high.

The opposition Congress-led United Democratic Front, which initially was seen putting up a better show in the first round of counting that began at 8 a.m., appears to have failed to make effective use of the numerous alleged scams of the Vijayan government.

A greater setback was evident for the BJP, which was seen promising that they will ride high, but failed to do so to the desired levels of their expectations.

The shocker came at the Kochi corporation, where the Congress’ mayoral candidate N. Venugopal lost by just one vote to his BJP rival, and for the Left, there was one in the Thiruvananthapuram corporation, when incumbent Mayor K. Sreekumar had to bite the dust.

In the three-tier local body structure, trends indicate that in the six corporations in the state, the LDF has romped home in Kollam, Kozhikode and Thiruvananthapuram while the UDF appears to have done well in Thrissur and Kannur and at Kochi which it ruled for the past 10 years, it was a cliff hanger.

In the municipalities, the UDF is leading in 45, the LDF is 35 while the BJP is ahead in four.

Out of the 14 districts, the Left is leading in 10 and the UDF in four. In the Block Panchayats, the LDF is ahead in 108, the UDF in 44 and the BJP at the moment has drawn a blank. In the Gram Panchayats, the LDF is ahead in 514 and the UDF in 377 while the BJP in 22. The final results are expected later in the night.

Compared with the 2015 polls, at the moment, the UDF has overall managed to get more, while in fact the Left has got marginally less than what they got in 2015. Likewise the BJP overall in the three tier structure have fared slightly better, but fell far below their expectations, where they were expecting to rule the Thiruvananthapuram corporation.

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