Kochi, Oct 11: The voter turnout in Vengara Assembly constituency elections was recorded at 71.2 percent on Wednesday. The Election Commission officials said the turnout was higher in comparison with previous elections. 70.7 percent turnout was recorded in the 2016 Assembly polls.

The seat fell vacant after sitting MLA Indian Union Muslim League’s (IUML) PK Kunhalikutty vacated the seat to contest a bypoll in Malappuram Lok Sabha constituency. MP from Malappuram, E Ahamed, died following a cardiac arrest during the joint address of the President to both Houses of Parliament earlier this year.

For IUML, an ally of the Congress in Kerala, KNA Khader will contest the Vengara bypoll whereas, the CPM-led Left Democratic Front (LDF) has fielded PP Basheer as its candidate. The BJP has pitched K Janachandran Master for the election. Meanwhile, the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) announced KC Naseer as its candidate. Notably, there are two Independents in the fray.

Vengara, a bottle-shaped Assembly constituency in Malappuram district of Kerala, is considered a stronghold of the IUML. It has a Muslim-majority population of over 48,000 people. In the Vengara bypoll a tough fight can be expected between the IUML and the CPM candidates.