Winners and losers: Kerala elections

In the past three and a half decades of alliance politics in Kerala, where elections were split evenly between United Democratic Front and Left Democratic Front, 82 political parties have tried their luck at winning the people’s mandate. Of this 82, only 32 parties were able to win a seat in the 140 member state assembly in the past seven elections since 1982.

Interestingly the party that has contested most number of seats in Kerala in last seven elections has not won even a single seat. That distinction goes to Bharatiya Janata Party which has contested a whopping 850 seats in past 35 years and lost every single one of them.

Indian Union Muslim League with it’s stranglehold on Malappuram district is the winningest party in electoral politics. Both Communist Parties have a winning percentage higher than 50%. Congress and CPM are neck and neck, but Congress is trending lower in winnability since the UDF sweep in 2001. Muslim league has a 68% winning ratio overall across seven elections, but more remarkable is the fact that IUML won 83% of the seats it contested in 2011, up from 33% win ratio in 2006 when CPM shook some of League’s forts and turned League badlands red. Kerala Congress Mani has won 50 of the 88 seats they contested.

Winning parties Kerala elections


BJP has the worst return on investment by far, and their performance could arguably be the worst performance by any party anywhere in the country.  2016 is BJP’s biggest bet so far. BSP tried their hand in Kerala during Mayawati’s expansive days, but came up a cropper.

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Bonus: A quick glance at Kerala’s big parties and the number of seats they contest makes it clear the state is moving towards a four player system  – CPM, INC, CPI and IUML. As it is becoming more evident, any party other than these four do not have the scale to win across the state and in the next few elections will be asking more existential questions. Below is a table of contested seats for top five parties in Kerala.

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Kollam Assembly Elections

Swing Meter:



Kollam an erstwhile RSP and CPI bastion, leans left, and in 2016 LDF might just decimate UDF again. May 2016 also could be the end of Revolutionary Socialists as we know them, though Shibu Baby John may romp home in Chavara.



Kollam Constituencies and Swing:
Trends and Margins
Const. Swing Margin
Karunagappally LDF 10.5
Chavara SWING 4.8
Kunnathur LDF 4.3
Kottarakkara SWING 12.0
Pathanapuram UDF 9.0
Punalur LDF 6.2
Chadayamangalam LDF 5.5
Kundara SWING 7.0
Kollam SWING 10.5
Eravipuram LDF 4.2
Chathannur LDF 4.2


There are 6 LDF leaning constituencies and with K.B.Ganesh Kumar now in the LDF camp, the only UDF leaning constituency has a high chance of flipping. RSP, a party that once had a pan-Travancore presence and now limited mostly to Kollam has a do or die election in hand, with it’s cadre revolting. If RSP loses bad or is limited to one MLA, it will mostly be game over for the second most winningest party in Kollam.

Kollam is a CPI and RSP stronghold with both these parties winning over 50% of seats since 1982. CPM is the up and comer and the party is clearly going after RSP votes and aims at ending Revolutionary Socialists once and for all.


Parties of influence:
Party Wins
Party Since 1982 2011
CPI 23 4
RSP 19 2
CPM 12 3
INC 10 0
KCB 6 1
RSPB 3 1
KCJ 2 0
KCM 2 0
INCA 1 0
IUML 1 0
JANG 1 0
JSS 1 0
RSPS 1 0
SRP 1 0
TOTAL 83 11


Constituencies in Kollam are Chadayamangalam, Chathannur, Chavara, Eravipuram, Karunagappally, Kollam, Kottarakkara, Kundara, Kunnathur, Pathanapuram and Punalur.