Kerala Local Body Election Results December 2020

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A big scoop of victory in Kerala coalited the rule of the Left on Wednesday in local body polling result by all parties for the assembly elections in the state next year. The ruling alliance, hammered by corruption allegations, took the most of the Grama-Panchayats and district-panchayats in villages and districts.

The counting of votes polled in the crucial local body elections was conducted with the traditional political fronts-CPI (M)-led LDF, Congress-headed UDF and BJP-NDA- keeping their fingers crossed as its result is generally seen as pointer to the upcoming Kerala Assembly Elections.

In a major boost to the Pinarayi Vijayan-led government, the electorate in Kerala granted victory to the CPI(M)-led LDF in majority of the local bodies.

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The LDF was suave for victory in three-tier panchayats sweeping in the following:

  1. 514 Gram Panchayats
  2. 108 Block Panchayats
  3. 10 District Panchayats
  4. 35 Municipalities and 3 Corporations.

With that of the Congress-led UDF, the party was ahead inincluding Pandalam, which was the centre of protests against the entry of women of the banned age group into the Sabarimala Ayyappa shrine.

  1. 377 Gram Panchayats
  2. 46 Block Panchayats
  3. 4 District Panchayats
  4. 45 Municipalities and 3 Corporations.
  • The NDA led by the BJP had secured a lead in 24 Gram Panchayats and 2 Municipalities.
  • The Kerala Local Body Election Results went live on

Local Self Government Wards on Wednesday, 16th of December, 2020.

  • The ruling CPI(M)-led LDF has made inroads in UDF strongholds in central Kerala wresting power in Kottayam and Idukki district panchayats and winning several municipalities and panchayats in the civic polls.
  • 2020 Kerala local body election was the first election since the Jose K Mani faction of the KC(M) severed its decades-old ties with the UDF over its differences with the Congress over sharing the Kottayam district panchayat president’s post in the previous council.
  • The saffron party was ahead in Palakkad municipality also. Though the BJP could not put up a spectacular show, it still seemed to better its 2015 record, where it won 14 grama panchayats and the lone Palakkad municipality, and if the trends hold, could nearly double its seats this time.
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  • The overall voter turnout was 76%, only marginally lower than 77.76% in 2015. The ruling Left front had nearly swept the civic polls by winning 549 village panchayats, 90 block panchayats, 44 municipalities and four corporations. At the district panchayat level, both UDF and LDF had won 7 seats each.
  • The BJP had earlier organised state-wide protests against the entry of young women in the age group of 10-50 years into the shrine. UDF leaders– KPCC President Mullapally Ramachandran, Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala and former Chief Minister OommenChandy said the claims that the party-led front had been routed was baseless.
  • In corporations, the LDF achieved simple majority in Kozhikode, Kollam and Thiruvananthapuram and became the single largest party in Kochi. The UDF got a simple majority in Kannur and the single largest party status in Thrissur. In Both Kochi and Thrissur, both fronts will have to shore up support of rebels or Independents to get mayor and deputy mayor posts.
  • The results are certainly a stinging setback to the UDF which was hoping to win big in the local body polls and thereby present a united and strong campaign in 2021 Assembly polls.
  • Leader of Opposition Ramesh Chennithala admitted that the ‘public sentiment against the corruption of the LDF government’ in the backdrop of the gold smuggling case has not reflected in the results.
  • LDF’s major inroads into UDF vote-banks particularly in Thrissur, Ernakulam and Kottayam districts indicates a popular support base that goes beyond the CPM’s strict cadre votes.
  • As for the BJP, it has faced setbacks in contests to Thrissur and Thiruvananthapuram corporations. At the same time, it has doubled the number of gram panchayats it holds and has added a municipality to its tally.
  • As much the BJP is concerned, it did not make much significant gains. While it repeated its performance in Thiruvananthapuram corporation, it won one more municipality – Panthalam, in addition to Palakkad – and 9 grama panchayats more than in 2015. But it did manage to win more many more wards and divisions this time, including in areas where it was not a significant presence.
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The COVID-19 Atmosphere during Kerala Local Body Elections, 2020:

  • According to Election Commission figures, a total of 73.12 per cent voter turnout was recorded in the first phase, 76.78 per cent in the second phase and 78.64 per cent in the third and final phase.The counting began at 244 centres at 8.00 am on Wednesday.
  • Postal ballots, including the special ballots issued to the COVID-19 positive voters and those under quarantine, were counted first, they said adding that the entire counting procedure was held in adherence with the COVID-19 protocols.
  • Section 144 has been in place in northern Malappuram and in some pockets of neighbouring Kozhikode and Kasaragod districts ahead of the announcement of the poll results.
  • This time, the civic body polls have gained comparatively more significance as its result is generally considered to reflect the political mindset of the southern state which would go to assembly polls after some months.
  • So, despite COIVD-19 protocols and restrictions, the state witnessed a fierce campaign in which everything right from national politics to state issues became a campaign tool.
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Other factors:

  • The first phase of elections was held for five southern districts Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, and Idukki.
  • The second phase of elections was held for five southern districts Ernakulam, Kottayam, Thrissur, Palakkad, and Wayanad.
  • The final stage was on 14 December in Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur, and Kasaragod in northern Kerala.
  • In the upcoming elections, a total of 2.71 crore voters are eligible to vote across 34,744 polling stations.
  • The Kerala State has 1200 self-government institutions categorized into village panchayats, block panchayats, district panchayats, municipalities, and municipal corporations across 14 districts.
  • However, the local body elections are scheduled for 1199 local bodies, and the Mattanur segment follows a separate election tenure.
  • The ruling LDF, which used to showcase a good performance in the civic body polls, banked on the achievements in the development front under the four and half years old rule of Pinarayi Vijayan government.
  • However, opposition UDF, during the campaign, focused on various corruption charges against the government and controversies related to the gold smuggling case and allegations cropped up against the Chief Minister’s office.
  • BJP-NDA, which was looking all means to break the decades-old bipolar polity led by UDF and LDF, was hopeful of showcasing an impressive performance and garner three-fold seats compared to the 2015 civic polls.
  • The UDF has won majority in Kannur. In Thrissur and Kochi corporations, however, UDF and LDF have a close call, with independents likely to decide their fate.
  • The BJP also counted some gains on Wednesday; its councillor won in the Kannur Corporation for the first time. The BJP alliance has seen a marginal increase in its tally in Grama Panchayats and Municipalities.
  • In Kochi Corporation, Congress’ mayor candidate N Venugopal loses by one vote to BJP.While BJP District President VV Rajesh won thein the Poojappura ward.
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  • In the six corporations, Left is ahead in four and UDF is ahead in two corporations
  • This time, the civic body polls have gained comparatively more significance as its result is generally considered to reflect the political mindset of the southern state which would go to assembly polls after some months.
  • Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has been the face of the party and government — this is his personal triumph; especially after the LDF won only one seat in the Lok Sabha elections. These are not the same as Assembly elections, but the victory will be read as a referendum on his government.
  • Vijayan’s office has been caught in the gold smuggling scandal; CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan was forced to go on leave after his son was jailed in a drug case. While the opposition went after him, the CM kept the focus on the achievements of his government, especially welfare schemes and grassroots interventions, including housing for the poor.
  • Vijayan masterminded the move of the Kerala Congress (M), the Christian party led by Jose K Mani, from the UDF to the LDF, ignoring protests from the CPI. Thanks to the KC(M), the LDF has gained in traditional UDF strongholds in Kottayam, Idukki and Pathanamthitta.
  • The Congress’s deal with the Jamaat-e-Islami’s Welfare Party of India allowed the CPM to claim that the UDF was aligning with communal forces. It brought back some Hindu voters who had turned away from the LDF over the entry of women into Sabarimala. The LDF also signalled to Christians who have been upset over Muslim organisations gaining an upper hand in the UDF.
  • During the catastrophic flood of 2018, and in the initial days of the Covid-19 lockdown, LDF-ruled local bodies did a stellar job of crisis management. The government gave local bodies bigger roles in health and education, allowing them to touch people closely. 
  • The UDF failed to anticipate the damage Jose K Mani, son of the late K M Mani, would do. Jose’s rival in Kerala Cong (M), P J Joseph, failed to stem the Jose tide in central Kerala.
  • The UDF’s understanding with Jamaat-e-Islami’s Welfare Party of India — which had won several seats with LDF in 2015 — has been counterproductive.
  • Within the UDF too, some Muslim voters were opposed to the Jamaat-e-Islami — and several Muslim religious heads close to the Indian Union Muslim League warned against the alliance. The Jamaat-e-Islami presence on the UDF platform also triggered unrest among pro-Congress Christians — the Kerala Catholic Bishops Council criticised the Congress’s decision.
  • In several seats, the Congress faced rebels. Disputes over seat-sharing led to UDF allies fielding candidates against each other. In the time of Covid-19, the Congress could not match the LDF’s ground-level electoral machinery and social media campaign.
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Complete list on how the wards in panchayats of Kerala got registered:

Sl. NoLGI Type  No of LGIs  No of Wards  No of Members  Mayor/Chairman/President  Standing committee chairman  
Male    Female  Total
1District Panchayat143311571743311470
2Block Panchayat152208094911262075140556
3Municipality           87307814601617307781487
4Corporation           6414190222412547
5Grama Panchayat9411596272158706159218823502
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