Voting began on Monday morning for the bypoll to Kerala’s Pala Assembly constituency. It will conclude at 6 p.m. Counting of votes will take place on Friday.
At the end of two hours of polling at 9 a.m., 13.2 per cent electorate had cast their votes. Some 1,79,107 electorate are casting their vote for the 13 candidates in the fray.
The Assembly bypoll was necessitated by the death of its Kerala Congress (Mani) MLA K.M.Mani in April. Mani had represented Pala since 1965.
Among the candidates, Mani’s closest aide Jose Tom Pullikunnel is contesting as a candidate of the Congress-led United Democratic Front. The BJP has fielded its Kottayam district President N.Hari, while the Left is backing Nationalist Congress Party’s local leader Mani C.Kappen.
Pullikunnel was spotted with his family members casting his vote at a polling booth. He expressed confidence that he will romp home with more votes than what Mani secured in 2016.
Kappen said he would be the winner this time, as the electorate in Pala wants a change.
Hari also exuded confidence that a surprise was in the offing.