Thushar Vellappally is NDA candidate at Wayanad

Thushar Vellappally is NDA candidate at Wayanad

Thushar Vellapally

Bharat Dharma Jana Sena (BDJS) leader Thushar Vellappally will contest against Congress president Rahul Gandhi at Wayanad as the NDA candidate.

BDJS is a political outfit initiated by the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalanayogam (SNDP), an organisation for the prominent Hindu Ezhava community in Kerala.

Thushar is the vice president of the SNDP. His father Vellappally Natesan, who heads the SNDP, has been showing allegiance to the Left front in Kerala for some time.

BJP president Amit Shah announced Thushar's candidature from Wayanad on Twitter.

"I proudly announce Shri Thushar Vellappally, president of BDJS as NDA candidate from Wayanad. A vibrant and dynamic youth leader, he represents our commitment towards development and social justice. With him, NDA will emerge as Kerala's political alternative," Shah tweeted.

Reacting to the candidature, Thushar said that he was confident of giving a tight fight to Rahul as he had a considerable support base in Wayanad constituency.

Thushar also said that a candidate from North India will not be able to know the pulse of Kerala voters. The fight in Wayand is going to be between the NDA and the Congress, while the Left front will not have any significance, he said.

Thushar, who is making an electoral debut, was planning to contest at Thrissur and Paily Vathiattu was decided as BDJS candidate at Wayanad.

But in view of Congress president Rahul Gandhi's decision to contest from Wayanad, the NDA agreed to Thushar's demand that he would contest from Wayanad. The BJP may now take back the Thrissur seat from BDJS, as it is considered by the party as one of the few winnable seats in Kerala.

Sources close to Thushar said that he is aged 49 and holds an MBA. He has been actively involved in the hotel business.

The BDJS was formed in 2016. BDJS candidates contested in 36 seats, including two Assembly segments in Wayanad constituency, in the 2016 Assembly elections in Kerala. Though they did not win in any seats, the party got a vote share of 4% in the state while that of the BJP was 10.6%.

The Left front has already fielded CPI’s former Malappuram district secretary P P Suneer as the candidate at Wayanad.