Thrissur: Perhaps, Thrissur is one of the assembly constituency in central Kerala that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is hoping to win by fielding cine actor and Rajya Sbaha member Suresh Gopi who is fighting in a three way, neck and neck tussle.
Suresh Gopi is a familiar face for the voters of Thrissur and he failed to live up to expectations in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections when T N Pratapan of the Congress earned a thumping victory.
If the United Democratic Front candidate Padmaja Venugopal succumbed to the Left Democratic Front wave that swept the district in 2016 , LDF candidate P Balachandran had tasted defeat in 2011 assembly elections. It is just a coincidence that all the three contestants have tasted failure in different elections.
Daughter of veteran Congress leader K Karunakaran, UDF candidate Padmaja Venugopal asserts that Thrissur has been a stronghold of Congress.. She says she has established a strong link with the people during the past seven years and worked with the people. ” I am no more known as daughter of former Chief minister K Karunakaran,but people everywhere accepts my calibre. Thrissur is of course is a constituency that was her father’s long standing political base and fighting from here is definitely a mantle to be proved.
LDF”s P Balachandran is a popular face in the socio cultural scene and he is sure that the people would give him a chance as a pro LDF wave was sweeping the state.. Moreover, he has the goodwill and support of his predecessor V S Sunil Kumar, who is the minister for agriculture who could haul the constituency out of the developmental paralysis.
The BJP, which has put the Thrissur seat in A plus category, had been adamant about fielding a candidate with a star image. Thus, a triangular fight was ensured when Suresh Gopi filed his nomination. Making it clear that Sabarimala would be his chief poll plank this time as well, Suresh Gopi said the Centre was planning a legislation regarding womens” entry to the hill shrine.
Suresh Gopi had came here a few days ago from the hospital to file his nomination and went back as per doctor”s advice.
This week ,Suresh Gopi’s road show started from Sakthan Nagar and proceeded to Swaraj round and hundreds of party workers joined him. Senior leaders of the party in the district accompanied him in the road show..
Thrissur is a high-profile Assembly constituency where Congress heavyweight Therambil Ramakrishnan served as the MLA for seven terms.
CPI won the seat in 2016 after a gap of over 30 years when VS Sunilkumar emerged victorious by 6.987 votes. Sunilkumar had received 53,664 votes in the 2016 polls, whereas Congress’s Padmaja Venugopal had emerged as the runner-up securing 46,677 votes. BJP nominee B Gopalakrishnan had received 24,748 votes.
Sunilkumar is serving as the agriculture minister and this time the party has fielded P Balachandran,who will be up against BJP candidate Suresh Gopi and Congress party”s Padmaja Venugopal .
Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi is scheduled to visit Thrissur and address a public meeting here on March 31. CPI”s D Raja and CPM’s Sitaram Yechury and other party leaders are also in the constituency and addressed several arty meetings.