Campaigning for the first phase of the December 8 local body polls in five districts of Kerala ended on Sunday. The districts of Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Pathnamthitta, Alappuzha and Idukki go to the first phase of the elections on Tuesday. Due to COVID-19, the customary finale was missing from the last leg of the campaign. However, in some places, vehicle rallies were taken out with the virus guidelines being given a go-by. Candidates can undertake a silent campaign in the five districts on the eve of the elections, where there are 1,722 sensitive polling booths. In Kollam, police chased away party workers of rival fronts. During the close of the open campaign, Tourism Minister Kadakampally Surendran alleged that the Opposition Congress and the BJP were working in tandem as BJP leader Kummanam Rajashekharan too alleged that it was the fear of drubbing in the civic polls, which made the LDF allege a secret alliance between the two national parties. BJP state president K Surendran said both the LDF and UDF (United Democratic Front) had unleashed communal campaigns fearing defeat. While the ruling CPI(M)-led LDF had highlighted its achievements in the past four-and-a-half years, the Opposition used the Kerala gold- smuggling case and the Wadakancherry Life Mission project to attack the ruling dispensation. The second phase of the polls would be held in Ernakulam, Kottayam, Thrissur, Palakkad and Wayanad on December 10 while the third phase is to held in Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur and Kasaragod on December 14. The counting would take place on December 16.