After Karnataka, where does BJP stand in Kerala's Chengannur bypoll?

news/kerala | Sunday, May 27th, 2018
sumi s
Highlights

After BJP's unexpected yet brilliant performance in Karnataka assembly elections, now all eyes are glued on Kerala's Chengannur's bypoll which will commence tomorrow. 

After BJP's unexpected yet brilliant performance in Karnataka assembly elections, now all eyes are glued on Kerala's Chengannur's bypoll which will commence on Monday. This bypoll proves to be a pivotal one for all the three political factions in Kerala but what sets it apart from the rest in history, is BJP's incessant efforts to pull a success story in the southern state as political analysts believe that the tally will touch a new high if the saffron party manages to emerge victorious here. 
 
The bypoll triggered by the demise of the CPM's KK Ramachandran Nair, has in store the fate of CPM-led-LDF, Congress-led-UDF and BJP-led-NDA. What makes this particular bypoll a must-watch are BJP's alleged high chances of winning it. BJP's huge quantum leap in India is not a hidden fact anymore. The stellar performance it delivered in its neighbouring state, Karnataka, has everyone's hopes high for the party in Kerala. 
 
BJP, who stood as a lightweight with 6,062 votes in 2011, has now managed to score 42,862 votes in 2016 with its allies SNDP Yogam-backed BDJS. Despite bagging the last position in the political race, two years ago, it is interesting to note that the party was only 2,215 votes away from the Congress. After such a huge leap in just five years, looks like BJP has earned a lot of brownie points in the constituency. In Chengannur, BJP was seen giving a tough fight to its rivals on the campaign front even hours after party president Kummanam Rajasekharan was forced to stay away from campaigning.
 
Core element working in favour of the party in the constituency which has over 1.9 lakh voters, is its populace friendly face, PS Sreedharan Pillai.  He is known to have played a significant role even in 2016, despite the immense popularity of PM Modi. His strong connection with the public is very likely to translate into votes. 
 
However, there are several stumbling blocks which might come in the way of BJP's probable win. One of the major hurdles is its ally BDJS's annoyance over the allocation of administrative posts which might swing votes of the Ezhava community in favour of other parties. Nonetheless, between the Nair and Christian communities which form 50 percent of the total voters, the former community is likely to vote in favour of Pillai, as per reports. Also, the direction where the votes of BDJS will flow depends on the undertones of the scenario. 
 
Whatever be the situation, if the saffron party is able to pull at least 40,000 votes it will keep BJP very much in the political picture of Chengannur polls. 
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