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Rediff.com  » News » Moderate to brisk polling in Kerala second phase

Moderate to brisk polling in Kerala second phase

April 29, 2006 14:45 IST
Moderate to brisk polling was reported on Saturday in the second phase of Assembly elections in Kerala, covering 66 constituencies in six central districts, with an estimated 30 to 35 per cent casting their votes till noon.

Polling has been peaceful so far with no untoward incident reported from anywhere, Election Commission sources said in Thiruvananthapuram.

The sources said 24.02 per cent polling was reported till 11:00 am, with Wayanad reporting the maximum of 29.50 per cent.

Reports said heavy turn out of voters was witnessed in 'VIP' constituencies like Malampuzha, from where Communist Party of India (Marxist) stalwart and Leader of the Opposition V S Achuthanandan is seeking a mandate, Koduvally (Democratic Indira Congress-Karunakaran president K Muraleedharan), Kuttipuram (Indian Union Muslim League leader P K Kunhalikutty) and Palakkad (BJP leader and former Union Minister O Rajagopal).

A total of 437 candidates are in the fray covering 66 seats in the districts of Ernakulam, Thrissur, Palakkad, Malappuram, Kozhikode and Wayanad. There are 10.6 million voters, including 5.51 million women and 9,768 polling booths have been set up.

The fate of nine ministers in the Oommen Chandy Cabinet - M K Muneer (Mankada), E T Mohammed Basheer (Thirur), Dominic Presentation (Palluruthy), V K Ibrahim Kunju (Mattanchery), Kutty Ahamed Kutty (Thirurangadi), Aryadan Mohammed (Nilambur), A Sujanapal (Kozhikode-I) and P Anilkumar (Vandoor) will be decided on Saturday.

The Indian Union Muslim League, the second largest constituent of the ruling Congress-led United Democratic Front, is facing an uphill task this time to maintain its supremacy in the Malabar region where the Marxist party had made inroads in the recent past.

The first phase of polls to the six southern districts was on April 22 and the last phase for the remaining Kasargode and Kannur districts is scheduled for May 3.

LDF convener Paloli Mohammed Kutty told media that the LDF would register a historic win as all factors were in its favour.

Democratic Indira Congress leader K Karunakaran said the UDF would win the election as it was a united house now.
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