THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: More than 2.54 crore eligible voters of Kerala will go to polls on April 23, in the third of the seven-phase Lok Sabha elections.
The notification for the single-phase polling in the state will be issued on March 28. The last date for filing nominations will be April 4 while scrutiny and withdrawal of nominations are to be made on April 5 and 8 respectively. Counting will be on May 23. Polling in Lakshadweep has been scheduled for April 11.
The political parties in the state welcomed the Election Commission’s decision as the third-phase date will allow them enough time to campaign. As per the final electoral roll brought out a month ago, the state has 2,54,08,711 voters, which is an increase of 1.37 per cent. Of that total, 1,31,11,189 are women and 1,22,97,403 men. The list has around 119 third genders. As many as 2,61,780 young voters have been newly enrolled.
Malappuram continues to be on the top with 30,47,923 voters followed by Thiruvananthapuram (26,54,470). The number of polling booths in the state has been increased from 24,460 to 24,970.The state is set for triangular contests in many of its 20 constituencies. In the backdrop of the Sabarimala fiasco, the ruling Left front is a bit cautious and has already begun its campaign. The Congress is confident of making it big while the BJP-led NDA is eager to open its account in the state. Last time, the UDF had won 12 seats.
In the LDF, the CPM will contest 16 seats and CPI the rest four. Having announced its candidates already, the Front launched its election convention on Sunday. In the UDF, the Congress will contest 16 seats while two has been given to IUML, and one each to Kerala Congress (Mani) and RSP. While the UDF is yet to come out with its list of candidates, the NDA has not finalised its seat sharing.