ANI Photo | Thiruvananthapuram: Atop cranes, Shashi Tharoor, Rajeev Chandrasekhar wrap up poll campaigns

Airborne on adjacent cranes on the final day of poll campaigning for the second phase of Lok Sabha elections, Congress candidate Shashi Tharoor and BJP’s Rajeev Chandrasekhar who are in the fray from Thiruvananthapuram parliamentary constituency wrapped up their poll campaigning on Wednesday.
Both candidates were seen waving to the crowds at Peroorkada atop cranes adorned with their respective party flags.
Thousands of workers of the UDF, LDF, and NDA started gathering in the tiny town in the afternoon.
‘Kottikalasam’, is a high-spirited final outdoor campaign where all contesting candidates and their supporters gather at a junction adorned with party flags, with an aim to show strength before the curtain falls on the public campaign ahead of the polling day.
Shashi Tharoor, accompanied by Achu Oommen, daughter of former CM Oomen Chandy, climbed atop a crane first. On the other hand, Union Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology Chandrasekhar along with BJP district president VV Rajesh, too was seen on an adjacent crane.
With two popular faces taking on each other, the Thiruvananthapuram seat in Kerala has hogged the spotlight again ahead of the Lok Sabha Elections 2024. BJP has fielded Union minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar against incumbent Congress’ Shashi Tharoor in Thiruvananthapuram.
Tharoor, who has held the seat since 2009, is facing a challenge as the BJP has named a strong face against him. Chandrashekhar has served as the MoS for Electronics, Entrepreneurship and Information Technology.
Although CPI-M is part of the INDIA bloc, but it is not in any seat-sharing agreement with the Congress party in the state of Kerala. The CPM-led Left Democratic Front (LDF) has fielded CPI leader Pannyan Raveendran from the constituency, who won the seat in 2005.
All 20 Lok Sabha constituencies in Kerala will vote in a single phase on April 26. Counting will be held on June 4.
In 2019, the Congress party registered victory on 19 out of the 20 seats while CPI-M could only win one seat. The BJP failed to open its account.
Chandrashekhar has put up his vision document for Kerala’s capital city and has said that it will speed up the development of the constituency and will cover every segment of society. He also said that Tharoor and former Raveendran have done nothing for Thiruvananthapuram.
He has also said the constituency has been deprived of development for the last 15-20 years and people here are “craving” for jobs and development.
Chandrashekhar also said that the Muslim and Christian communities in the state are made “fearful” of the BJP through a “false narrative”.
Tharoor on the other hand, said that BJP’s message is “not well received” in Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Andhra Pradesh and the party has very little hope from southern India.
Chief Electoral Officer Sanjay Kaul, has however cautioned all the political parties to strictly adhere to the code of conduct.
During the last 48 hours, only silent campaigning is permissible, and any gathering of people or organizing of public meetings will be dealt with under Criminal Procedure Code Section 144, said the official.
The use of loudspeakers and organizing of rallies and processions are prohibited. No kind of performance (like cinema, television shows, advertisements, music events, dramas, and other similar displays, opinion polls, poll surveys, and exit polls) that could influence the election outcome is allowed.
Violators could face imprisonment, fines, or both. Exit polls are prohibited until half an hour after the last phase of voting is completed.
Police and enforcement agencies will continue stringent checks to prevent illegal activities.
Actions like the illegal transfer of money, offering freebies and gifts, and distribution of alcohol, if found, will lead to severe legal action. A dry day has been declared for the 48 hours until the completion of voting, banning the distribution and sale of alcohol

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