Will CPM retain its hold on Attingal?

Will CPM retain its hold on Attingal?

Will CPM retain its hold on Attingal?

It has only been around six years since Attingal was formed as a Lok Sabha constituency after delimitation.

As A Sampath, the CPM candidate and sitting MP, seeks another term from Attingal, the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) is building its campaign on alleged apathy to infrastructure needs in the constituency, especially in and around Attingal town.

The CPM has a strong support base in the constituency that has been dubbed a safe Parliament seat for the Left Democratic Front (LDF) for over two decades. Sampath has development as a key campaign focus here.

The MP’s team has been on an overdrive, highlighting projects initiated during his term while the LDF women’s front has kick-started a campaign to woo women voters in the constituency with a focus on issues, including the rise of LPG prices, the Centre’s flip-flops on the Aadhaar card and attacks against women and children.

The Congress has fielded Bindu Krishna, the Mahila Congress state president, against Sampath in the constituency. The party targets the MP over his largely Thiruvananthapuram-centric operations and claims that good records in the Parliament do not necessarily translate to good work done on the ground.

Further, it alleges shoddy implementation of development projects in the constituency when compared to the two constituencies it falls between: Kollam and Thiruvananthapuram, both won by the Congress in 2009.

The Attingal constituency comprises seven Assembly constituencies: Varkala, Attingal, Chirayankeezhu, Nedumangad, Vamanapuram, Aruvikkara and Kattakkada. The new voters in the constituency, numbering more than one lakh, could also be a decisive factor in the election.

The BJP hopes to find favour with some of the CPM supporters by fielding S Girija Kumari, a former CPM panchayat president who recently deflected to the BJP.