Kozhikode | Unable to open electoral account in Kerala so far, the Bharatiya Janata Party, heading the National Democratic Alliance Government at the Centre, appears to be gaining ground in Kerala gradually if the huge number of votes polled by its candidate O Rajagopal in Aruvikkara bypoll in the state is any indication.
A Former Union Minister in the NDA Government led by veteran leader A B Vajpayee, the 86-year-old ‘Rajettan,’ as he is popularly called in the state, polled 34,145 votes shocking the principal political formations – the Congress-led ruling United Democratic Front and CPI-M-headed opposition Left Democratic Front.
Though UDF candidate K S Sabarinathan won the poll, result of which was declared earlier in the day, with a comfortable margin of 10,128 votes the BJP veteran had increased his tally to 34,145 as against 7,614 votes polled by his party colleague in the 2011 election.
In the 2004 Lok Sabha election in Thiruvananthapuram, Mr Rajagopal polled 2,28,052 votes as against LDF candidate P K Vasudevan Nair who won the seat with 2,86,057 votes.
In the next general election in 2014, Mr Rajagopal took a vote share of 33.53 per cent polling 2,82,336 votes as against UDF’s Shashi Tharoor, who won Thiruvananthapuram seat polling 2,97,806 votes.
The party had increased its overall vote share in the State from 6.4 per cent to 10.8 per cent in the last general election eliciting comment from its President V Muralidharan ”we may not have won any seat, but our overall vote share has touched 10.8 per cent.”
”It has brought us cheer, he added.
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