March 23, 2011 12:14:27 am
The Congress on Tuesday night released a list of 81 candidates for the April 13 Assembly elections in Kerala.
The party retained its 23 sitting legislators. Congress state chief Ramesh Chennithala,Opposition leader Oommen Chandy and the late Karunkarans son K Muraleedharan are some of the high-profile contestants.
Lathika Subash,a woman leader from Kottayam,has been field from Malampuzha to take on sitting legislator and Chief Minister V S Achuthanandan. The CPM has also fielded a woman,Prof Suja Soosan George,against Opposition leader Oommen Chandy.
Although the demand to give tickets to fresh faces and youngsters has not been met along expected lines,the Congress has tried to pacify the youth by giving tickets to NSU president Hybi Eden,Kerala Students Union president Shafi Parambil and Youth Congress state vice-president M Liju.
Former Youth Congress state president T Sidique,a Chandy loyalist,has been denied ticket. Another prominent name missing from the list is Karunakarans daughter Padmaja Venugopal,who had intensely lobbied for a ticket. While heavy weights and familiar faces have bagged safe seats,many young faces have been fielded from CPM bastions.
Youth Congress leader Rajil Makkutti will contest from Thalassery where Home Minister and CPM Polit buro member Kodiyeri Balakrishnan has been winning for the last 20 years. Only six woman have been included in the list,evoking protests from aspirants.
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