The Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) in Kerala has finally taken a decision on seat sharing in the 2021 Kerala Assembly elections on April 6. Out of the 140 Assembly seats, Congress will contest in 91 seats. However, the Congress in Kerala did not announce its list of candidates and said it will announce the decision in a few days.
Among the other constituents of the UDF, 10 seats have been allotted to Kerala Congress, five seats to Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP), two seats to Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and one seat each to Janata Dal, Communist Marxist Party (CMP) and Kerala Congress (Jacob). The Indian Union Muslim League (IUML), a major ally of the UDF, had earlier in the day announced that its candidates will contest in 27 seats.
Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala, Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) President Mullappally Ramachandran and former Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, had met the media in Delhi after a meeting with the party leadership on Friday. They said that each party leader in UDF will declare its own candidates.
The Congress party’s candidate list for the 2021 Kerala Assembly polls will be announced on Sunday by its national leaders in Delhi. However, the leaders confirmed that candidates to 81 seats have been finalised, while a call is yet to be taken on 10 seats. But they did not make a mention of which are the 10 seats where candidates have not been finalised.
Notably, the party has said that no sitting Members of Parliament will be contesting in the polls. With this, all speculations of Shashi Tharoor and K Muraleedharan contesting the election have been put to rest.
For the last several weeks, Congress leaders in Kerala have been holding various screening committee meetings to take a call on the candidate list. Though reporters raised questions about the prevalence of any crisis within the party in finalising the candidates, Ramesh Chennithala and Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) President Mullappally Ramachandran deflected the questions.
The 10 seats for the Kerala Congress are Irinjalakuda, Kothamangalam, Thodupuzha, Idukki, Kaduthuruthy, Etumanoor, Changanassery, Kuttanad Thiruvalla and Trikaripur.
The Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP) is allotted five seats in Mattanur, Chavara, Unathur, Eravipuram and Attingal constituencies. Notably, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) will contest from the Erathur and Pala constituencies.
Mani C Kappen is the sitting MLA in Pala and had contested as a Left Democratic Front (LDF) candidate. After Jose K Mani faction of the Kerala Congress (M) joined the LDF and demanded to contest from the Pala seat for Assembly polls, Kappen joined UDF. He left the NCP, which was led by Shard Pawar, and floated his own party, Nationalist Congress Kerala.
Meanwhile, Janata Dal will contest from Malampuzha, Communist Marxist Party (CMP) will contest from Nemmara and Kerala Congress (Jacob) has decided to contest from Piravom.
The Congress leaders also hinted that the party has not decided on a candidate for the Vadakara constituency in the Kozhikode district of Kerala. The party leaders announced that UDF will support the Revolutionary Marxist Party (RMP) if it decided to field K Rema, wife of slain RMP leader TP Chandrasekharan.