Kerala: Amid battle of regulars, new kid on the block

For Kerala, this Lok Sabha election too has been a repeat of the regular, customised battle between the Congress-led United Democratic Front and CPM-led Left Democratic Front. BJP, which has never been a key player in the state’s electoral politics, has toiled extra, expecting to open an account.

For the LDF, the results will indicate the success or failure of its crucial decision to field five independent minority community candidates in constituencies where they are in significant numbers. Within the CPIM, the result would indictae whether Opposition leader V S Achuthanandan’s poll-eve ceasefire with rival Pinarayi Vijayan, party state secretary, had a positive effect among party workers.

Although BJP is not a significant player in Kerala, both Congress and CPM played the Narendra Modi factor to the hilt to woo Christian and Muslim voters, who form roughly 46 per cent of the state’s population. The results will have an impact on the fate of any Congress government led by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, who has said that the polls would be a referendum on the state government.