Thiruvananthapuram, May 19 (IANS) Former union minister O. Rajagopal was set to win from Nemom constituency on Thursday to give the BJP its first ever seat in the Kerala assembly.
The 86-year-old was leading by around 8,000 votes, relegating outgoing CPI-M legislator V. Sivankutty to the second place.
Bharatiya Janata Party supporters celebrated the impending victory outside the counting centre.
Rajagopal had contested the Thiruvananthapuram Lok Sabha seat in 1999, 2004 and 2014. He finished in the second place behind Sashi Tharoor of the Congress in 2014.
He had contested the 2011 assembly polls from Nemon and came second. In a 2012 by-election in Neyyatinkara, he got more than 30,000 votes but could not win.
The BJP has never won an assembly or Lok Sabha seat in Kerala.