NEYYATINKARA: The Neyyatinkara byelection scheduled for June 2 is going to be a historic one as the constituency is going to witness a tri-cornered contest with the BJP also vigorously hitting the poll trail.
The campaign scene has come alive with prominent leaders of both ruling and Opposition fronts making their presence felt in the segment.
It was from Neyyatinkara that the legendary king of Venad, Marthandavarma started his onslaught against the Nair chieftians â€˜â€™Ettu veettil pillamarâ€™â€™.
The presence of the hollow trunk of a jackfruit tree (Ammachi plavu) located near the Sreekrishna Swamy temple here still reminds of a rich saga of valour and pietousness.
Neyyatinkara is also known for its legendary freedom warriors and social reformers like Veera Veluthampi Dalawa, Veera Raghavan and Swadeshabhimani Ramakrishnan Pillai.
Though centuries have passed, the battle royale now has new players.
The political significance of the upcoming election has increased with R Selvaraj of the CPM deciding to quit the party and Assembly membership and now contesting as the UDF candidate.
Currently, five panchayats - Chenkal, Karode, Kulathur Thirupuram, Athiyannur and Neyyatinkara municipality - form the constituency.
Chenkal, Karode and Kulathur from the erstwhile Parassala segment are the three panchayats attached after delimitation.
After delimitation, Neyyatinkara became the 140th constituency, ie, the southernmost tip of the state.
R Chandrasekharan Nair of the CPI was the first person to be elected to the Kerala Assembly in 1957.
In 1960, P Narayanan Thampi of the PSP was elected.
In 1965, G Chandrasekharan Nair of the Congress was elected.
In 1967, R Gopalakrishnan Nair retained the seat for the Congress.
In 1970, R Parameswaran Thampi of the CPM was elected.
But in 1977, R Sundareshan Nair of the NDP was the victor.
He was fortunate enough to get reelected in 1980 and also became a minister, the first one from the segment.
But in 1982 and 1987, S R Thankaraj of the Janata Party won the seat.
Thampanoor Ravi was elected for three consecutive terms starting from 1991 to 2001.
In 2006, V J Thankappan of the CPM stopped his triumphant run.
In 2011, R Selvaraj defeated Thampanoor Ravi only to later resign from the party as well as his Assembly seat necessitating the byelection.
CSI, Latin Catholic communities and other Christian denominations constitute 42 per cent of the 1.
66 lakh voters.
Nair community comes second with 30 percent of the voters.
Ezhavas constitute 10 percent while SC and ST together form 10 per cent of the voters.
Muslims have 6 per cent of vote share.
Viswakarma, Kumbhara and other backward communities have 2 per cent of vote share.