Home >politics >policy >Election results: BJP signals its arrival in Kerala with O Rajagopal victory

New Delhi: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has signaled its arrival in Kerala.

The party has doubled its vote share since the previous assembly elections, and has made it to the state assembly from Nemom constituency in Thiruvananthapuram district.

Former Union minister O. Rajagopal of the BJP has won from from Nemom constituency defeating sitting MLA V. Sivankutty of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), or CPM.

The party is trailing in Chathannur, Kazhakkoottam, Malampuzha, Manjeshwar, Palakkad, Thiruvananthapuram, Udma and Vattiyoorkavu.

Voters in the state, specially youth and women, feel Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led BJP can help meet their aspirations, making it a viable option in some parts of the state.

While the BJP had a vote share of 6.03% in the 2011 assembly elections, the party now has a vote share of 10.7%

The party formed a tactical alliance with the Bharat Dharma Jana Sena (BDJS), the political arm of the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam (SNDP)—an organization led by Vellapally Natesan. It represents the politically influential Ezhava community in the state. BDJS, as per early trends, has a vote share 4%.

Traditionally, Kerala has seen a bipolar contest between the Left Democratic Front (LDF) and the United Democratic Front (UDF). But this time, it seems that the BJP, with its increased vote share, could play the role of a spoiler in at least a few constituencies, making it difficult for both the alliances.

A good start in Kerala and Tamil Nadu, where too the party is leading in one seat, has opened up the possibility of the party improving on its presence in southern India. It has so far ruled in only one southern state, Karnataka.

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