Left Front Leads In Kerala Panchayat Polls, Hails Mandate

As the Left Democratic Front (LDF) inches closer to a clear victory as counting of local body polls reaches its final leg, the Left welcomed the people’s mandate while United Democratic Front (UDF) claimed it did not lose ground and National Democratic Alliance (NDA) said it was able to make inroads in the state.

As per latest trends, the ruling CPI(M)-led LDF is leading in 516 out of the total 941 gram panchayats, according to the State Election Commission figures.

The Congress-led UDF was ahead in 375 gram panchayats while NDA is leading in 22 gram panchayats.

Out of the six corporations in the state, the LDF and the UDF were leading in three each.

CPI(M) state secretary and LDF convenor A Vijayaraghavan said the results show that people in the state did not believe the propaganda and lies spread by the opposition.

“There was a strong attack on the Left by both the Congress-led UDF and BJP-led NDA. There were attempts made even to disrupt the day-to-day operations of the state government through central agencies. The results show that people have rejected all of it and are with the Left which is implementing development works in the state,” he said.

BJP state president K Surendran alleged that vote-trading has taken place between UDF and LDF but it did not deter NDA to make big gains in the local body polls.

“NDA was able to make great achievements compared with the last election. Congress has diverted votes towards LDF, cross-voting has taken place. Particularly, in Thiruvananthapuram Corporation, UDF – LDF worked together to defeat NDA. The main takeaway from the results is that UDF has lost its prominence in the state. The upcoming assembly polls will be a fight between LDF and NDA,” he said.

Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president Mullapally Ramachandran claimed that UDF did not receive a big setback as being projected by the Left.

“Compared with 2015, we did not receive a major setback. We were able to hold ground in many places in the state. Our political affairs committee will meet tomorrow and will do an analysis. If anything needs to be corrected, we will do so,” he said.

The Kerala local body polls were held in three phases. The first phase saw a turnout of 73.12 per cent, while the second phase saw 76.78 and the third and final phase 78.64 per cent.

A total of 21,893 wards in 1,200 local self-governing bodies, including six corporations, 941 village panchayats, 14 district panchayats and 87 municipalities went to the polls in on December 8, 10 and 14. (ANI)

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