In the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, LDF candidate of Kollam parliamentary seat, M. A. Baby, had secured a lead of 4,640 votes over his nearest United Democratic Front (UDF) rival N.K. Premachandran in the Punalur segment. This was despite the fact that N.K. Premachandran, who belongs to RSP, managed to win the Kollam seat.
However, in 2015 local body elections, the LDF emerged victorious in all the gram panchayats and the Punalur municipality which are parts of the assembly Punalur constituency.
While the sitting CPI MLA K. Raju is facing the electorate on behalf of the LDF, A. Younus Kunju of the Indian Union Muslim League is the UDF nominee for 2016 assembly elections.
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K. Raju of CPI is the sitting MLA of Punalur which he won in 2011 second time in a row by defeating his nearest Congress rival Johnson Abraham by a margin of 18005 votes. While 72648 votes were polled by K. Raju, the Congress candidate secured 54643 votes. B.Radhamani of the BJP was relegated to the third place with just 4155 votes.
CPI leader P.K. Sreenivasan represented the constituency on three occasions. Veteran Congress leader C.M. Stephen was elected from here in 1965 and Congress leader Punalur Madhu in 1991. K. Raju of the CPI who had won the previous two consecutive terms is in the fray this time too as the Left Democratic Front (LDF) candidate.
Punalur is one of the seven assembly segments falling under the Kollam Lok Sabha constituency. Chavara, Chadayamangalam, Kundara, Kollam, Eravipuram and Chathannoor are the other six constituencies with the Kollam parliamentary constituency.
The Punalur Assembly constituency is formed by the areas covered by Punalur municipality as well as and the grama panchayats of Aryankavu, Anchal, Edamulackal, Karavaloor, Eroor, Thenmala and Kulathupuzha.
The Punalur Assembly constituency is inhabited by large populations of Adivasis and plantation labourers.
As is the case with most of the assembly constituencies in Kerala, in the Punalur assembly constituency, female voters outnumber the males. According to the latest estimates by the Election Commission of India, there are 201499 registered voters in Punalur, among them 106132 are women and 95367 men.