Kottayam (Kerala) | Opposition Congress-UDF on Friday retained the Puthuppally Assembly constituency in Kerala as its candidate Chandy Ommen won by a margin of over 36,000 votes in the bypoll, Election Commission sources said.
While Oommen, son of late Congress stalwart Oommen Chandy, gained a clear edge since the initial round, his nearest rival and ruling LDF candidate Jaick C Thomas could never gain a lead in any rounds.
The CPI(M)-led LDF lost ground even in its stronghold areas, and BJP candidate Lijin Lal was nowhere in the picture when the counting was over.
Chandy Oommen (37), currently chairman of the Youth Congress's national outreach cell, could well surpass his father's record of margin of 33,255 votes in the constituency, which the late Congress leader represented Puthuppally in the state assembly for over five decades.
The bypoll result, which came a few months ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha polls, is seen as a huge setback for the ruling CPI(M), which has been facing allegations of corruption and nepotism from the opposition Congress-led UDF and the BJP.
The bypoll was held following the death of Oommen Chandy. The election was conducted on September 5.