KOLLAM: Panachavila ward in Edamulackal grama panchayat, though unfamiliar to many outside the district, is now bracing for a political duel between a mother and son. Both have rolled up their sleeves to contest the local body polls as rival candidates from the same ward.
While Sudharma Devarajan is the BJP's pick for the ward, her son Dhinuraj is seeking the mandate on an LDF ticket. The announcement came as a surprise to their family members and neighbours alike.
Sudharma, a Mahila Morcha activist, contested the last local body elections on a BJP ticket and lost to the LDF. Her son Dhinuraj is the treasurer of DYFI Edamulackal unit.
Sudharma says that the Left is trying to play a dirty political game by making her son its candidate, as her candidature was fixed many days ago by the party.
"As I finished second in the last local body polls, the BJP chose me as its candidate this time expecting a sure win. But the Left wanted to ensure the victory of the Congress by pitting Dhinuraj against her," said Sudharma.
Dhinuraj, on the other hand, says he is not against his mother, but against the ideology of the party she represents.
"It's not a contest between two individuals, but a fight between the ideologies of two rival political parties. I am damn against the policies of the BJP, that is why I wanted to contest the polls. Under the LDF rule, the 7th ward of the panchayat has witnessed many developmental activities in the past five years. Therefore, we are sure the LDF can retain the seat with a huge majority," said Dhinuraj. The Congress is yet to announce its candidate.
Expecting a big fight, voters are keeping their fingers crossed even weeks before the voting day, December 8.
In the outgoing 22-member panchayat council, the LDF has 14 seats, UDF, six and BJP, two seats.