Thiruvananthapuram, Apr 7 (PTI) Senior Congress leader Ramesh Chennithala has urged the Election Commission not to delay the announcement of the date for the bypoll to Chengannur Assembly constituency in the state.

Chennithala had sent a letter in this regard to the Chief Election Commissioner Om Prakash Rawat yesterday.

“However, the date for the Chenngannur bypoll had not been announced so far even after the date for the Karnataka assembly election was declared,” the Leader of Opposition had stated in the letter.

“The reason for the delay is not yet clear,” he said.

The bypoll was necessitated following CPI(M) MLA K K Ramachandran Nair’s death in January last, he added.

A triangular contest is expected as major fronts, including the ruling LDF, Opposition UDF and BJP, have announced the candidates and begun campaigning, Chennithala said.

Saji Cheriyan, a senior CPI(M) leader, was the candidate of the LDF while the UDF has announced D Vijayakumar as its candidate.

The BJP is fielding former State party president P S Sreedharan Pillai.

The bypoll result would be seen as a referendum to the nearly two-year-old LDF government headed by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.

The opposition Congress had already made it clear that the by-election result would be a reflection of not only the rule of the state government but also that of the BJP-led NDA at the Centre.

Chengannur was one of the traditional strongholds of the UDF but lost it to the LDF in the Assembly elections in 2016.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.