VADAKARA: The Vadakara Lok Sabha constituency is prestigious for both LDF and UDF for many reasons. For the ruling CPM-led Left Democratic Front (LDF), the upcoming general election will be a do-or-die battle to retain the seat in its formidable fortress. For the latter, it could think nothing more than a victory of the sitting seat which was taken to its kitty after the decades-old fight against its arch-rival CPM.
On the other hand, BJP is hoping to reap a large chunk of Hindu votes on Modi effect and the recent Sabarimala issue from the politically and communally sensitive segment. Definitely, CPM rebel group Revolutionary Marxist Party of India (RMPI) and Loktantric Janata Dal (LJD), which recently entered the Left fold, will play a vital role in the poll battle.
Over the past three decades, the constituency stood with CPM-led Left front - excluding the past two tenures. It was in 1980, when senior Congress leader K P Unnikrishan joined Left Democratic Front after the formation of Indian Congress (Socialist), the constituency went to the LDF account.
Unnikrishnan, former Union Minister, had represented the constituency for six consecutive terms in the lower house of Parliament from 1971 to 1991. In the first two terms, he contested on a Congress ticket. Later he faced the people’s mandate with the support of the LDF.
CPM took back the seat when he rejoined his parent party - Indian National Congress (INC) in 1996. CPM fielded its prominent face O Bharathan to defeat ally-turned-adversary Unnikrishan. With a whopping majority of 79,945 votes, CPM won the prestigious seat in the general election.
A K Premajam of CPM had continued the electoral victory in the left stronghold in 1998 and 1999. P Sathidevi of CPM, who contested in 2004, won the seat by defeating Congress’ M T Padma by securing a victory margin of 1,30,589 - the highest in the electoral history of the state. The people’s mandate turned bitter for LDF in 2009 and 2014 when Congress’ biggie Mullappally Ramachandran defeated P Sathidevi and A N Shamseer respectively.
Roll of honour
2009- Mullappally Ramachandran defeated P Sathidevi with a margin of 56,186 votes.
2004 - P Sathidevi of CPM won against M T Padma of INC by securing victory margin of 1,30,589 votes.
1998 - A K Premajam of CPM won against P M Suresh Babu of INC by 59,161 votes.
1996 - O Bharathan of CPM defeated ally-turned adversary K P Unnikrishnan of INC by 79,945 votes.
1989- K P Unnikrishnan of ICS defeated A Sujanapal of INC by 8,209 votes.
1980- K P Unnikrishnan who joined Indian Congress-Socialist(ICS) won against Mullappally Ramachandran of INC by 41,682 votes.
1977- K P Unnikrishnan of Indian National Congress (INC) defeated Arangil Sreedaran of Bharatiya Lok Dal (BLD) by 8,070 votes
CPM’s great electoral disaster in 2009
CPM had faced a great electoral debacle in its bastion in 2009 when its rebel RMP emerged as a decisive factor in the poll battle. Congress fielded its senior figure Mullappally Ramachandran to take on sitting member and CPM’s popular woman leader P Sathidevi who won the seat by a margin of 1,30,589 during her maiden tenure in 2004. In the election, Congress managed to wrest the seat by defeating the Sathidevi with a victory margin of 56,184 votes.