After months of campaigning and voting, the verdict for the five Assembly elections was declared on May 2. The results declared in the four states and one union territory were West Bengal, Assam, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry and had witnessed some of the biggest political leaders in the fray. While some leaders made big gains, some heavyweights lost their electoral battles. Here's a look at some of the prominent leaders who bit the dust in the Assembly elections:
In one of the most high-pitched election battles, CM Mamata Banerjee lost to ex-aide Suvendu Adhikari at Nandigram by a margin of 1737 votes. After an initial slip-up by agency sources, the Election Commission finally declared BJP's Suvendu Adhikari as the winner in a neck-to-neck contest. Ultimately, Mamata Banerjee's once protege trumped over her. Adhikari, who had jumped ship to join the BJP months ahead of elections, defeated the TMC chief with a margin of 1737 votes. Following Suvendu Adhikari's decision to join the saffron camp, Mamata Banerjee decided to forgo her Bhowanipore seat and contest from Nandigram, which was the cradle of the anti-land acquisition movement that catapulted her to power in 2011. Losing Nandigram, however, did not sit well with Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. A three-member Trinamool Congress delegation met with the Chief Electoral Officer at EC Office in Kolkata seeking a recount of votes.
Another key leader who lost the elections is actor-turned-politician Kamal Haasan. The Makkal Needhi Maiam (MNM) chief contested in the Tamil Nadu assembly elections from the Coimbatore (South) constituency. Haasan was challenged by the BJP's Vanathi Sreenivasan. Following a tough contest, Vanathi Sreenivasan emerged as the winner with a faint margin of over 900 votes. Among other contenders who Haasan faced were AMMK's R Doraisamy and Congress' Mayura S Jayakumar. The actor-turned-politician had floated his political party in Madurai in February 2018, asserting that the MNM will fill the political vacuum in Tamil Nadu.
Metroman E Sreedharan
In a bid to gain ground in Kerala, the BJP had fielded Metroman E Sreedharan from Kerala's Palakkad constituency. Initially, Sreedharan was leading throughout the day. However, in the final stages of counting, incumbent MLA and Congress leader Shafi Parambil retained his seat. The EC declared the Palakkad result where the Metroman was defeated by a margin of 3859 votes. With Sreedharan's defeat, the saffron party was reduced to zero seats in the Kerala elections. Initially, after he was fielded, Sreedharan garnered support from the Palakkad constituency. The 88-year-old was also the BJP's Chief Ministerial face for Kerala.
BJP leader Kushboo Sundar who contested from Tamil Nadu's Thousand Lights lost to DMK's Ezhilan N. The actor-turned-politician who quit the Congress to join the saffron camp was defeated by 17,522 votes. Kushboo Sundar had joined the BJP months ahead of the Tamil Nadu Assembly polls.
Apart from Metroman E Sreedharan, Kerala's BJP chief K Surendran too was defeated in the assembly polls. Surendran had contested the elections from two constituencies - Manjeshwaram in Kasaragod district and Konni in Pathanamthitta district. However, he lost from both seats as LDF's Jenish Kumar defeated him by 62,318 votes in Konni. Meanwhile, in Manjeshwaram, Surendran was defeated by UDF’s AKM Ashraf by more than 1,200 votes. Surendran is known for leading the Sabarimala agitation in 2018 against the entry of women of all ages to the Lord Ayyappa temple following the Supreme Court verdict.
Assembly election 2021
The elections to the five assemblies - West Bengal, Assam, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and Puducherry saw multiple parties in the fray. The West Bengal Elections were held in 8 phases. The results saw opposition parties winning by a huge margin in Tamil Nadu where the AIADMK-BJP alliance was defeated by the DMK-Congress coalition. DMK chief MK Stalin stares at his first tenure as Tamil Nadu's Chief Minister. In West Bengal, the ruling Trinamool Congress has retained power by defeating the BJP which had emerged as the main opposition force. However, the Congress and Left alliance failed to win a single seat in Bengal. In Kerala, the ruling LDF swept the election and Pinarayi Vijayan is staring at a second term as the state's CM. The BJP was left with zero seats in Kerala in spite of fielding key candidates. However, the saffron party has retained power in Assam with a comfortable majority and the party is likely to decide on the CM face. In Puducherry, the NDA coalition of AINRC and the BJP defeated the Congress-DMK alliance.