Kerala

Kerala election results: How actor-politicians fared

NDA candidate of the Thrissur constituency Suresh Gopi at Aranattukara on the concluding day of public campaign on Sunday.   | Photo Credit: K K NAJEEB

If Kerala’s new Assembly wants to conduct a cultural programme, it may not have to look outside for artistes. Among its members are two seasoned actors and a playback singer.

While this is the first term as an MLA for Daleema, who shot to fame for having a voice resembling that of the legendary S. Janaki, Mukesh and K.B. Ganesh Kumar have been elected before. Of course, Ganesh’s electoral victories owe more to his political lineage.

When Mukesh won from Kollam five years ago on a Communist Party of India (Marxist) ticket, he had become the first film star to win an Assembly election in Kerala without a political background to boast of. Unlike other southern States such as Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, film stars here had been showing little interest in electoral politics.

But, these elections saw a change in the trend. A significant number of stars – big as well as not so big – were fielded by all the three fronts.

The biggest of them was Suresh Gopi, who contested from Thrissur. Though the Bharatiya Janata Party’s Rajya Sabha MP managed to take the lead during the early stage of counting, he had to settle for the third place in a tight contest, behind winner P. Balachandran of the Communist Party of India and Padmaja Venugopal of Congress.

At Balussery, Dharmajan Bolgatty came second, but a rather distant one at that. The popular comedian lost to K.M. Sachin Dev of the CPI(M).

In Kollam, Mukesh faced a tougher challenge this time around, but defeated Congress’s Bindu Krishna. Elsewhere in the district, Ganesh Kumar scored a much more convincing win, against Jyothikumar Chamakkala; it is his fifth straight victory from Pathanapuram.

In Thiruvananthapuram, Krishnakumar, could not spring a surprise. The BJP candidate and television-anchor-turned actor could only finish third, behind winner Antony Raju of the Janadhipathya Kerala Congress and V.S. Sivakumar of the Congress.

Priyanka Anoop, a familiar voice through her comic roles, and television serial actor Vivek Gopan contested from Aroor and Chavara respectively. While Vivek, a BJP candidate, came third behind winner Sujith Vijayan Pillai of the LDF and Shibu Baby John of the Revolutionary Socialist Party, Priyanka, who represented Democratic Social Justice Party, failed to make any impact at Aroor, where Daleema, on a CPI(M) ticket, defeated Congress veteran Shanimol Usman.

“I am glad that Daleema has won,” Mukesh told The Hindu shortly after he himself was declared the winner. “It is good to see more artistes contesting and winning elections.”


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Printable version | Jun 17, 2021 3:18:10 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/elections/kerala-assembly/a-mixed-bag-for-tinsel-town/article34465307.ece

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