Kottayam: In a significant setback to Jose K. Mani, the Idukki Munsiff Court on Saturday extended the Thodupuzha Munsiff court's injunction against him officiating as the chairman of Kerala Congress (M).
The court reached the decision based on a prayer by Philip Stephen and Manohar Naduviladath, state committee members loyal to P. J, Joseph.
The Mani faction has elected him as the chairman on June 16. Since Thodupuzha munsiff withdrew from hearing it, it was transferred to Idukki.
The court rejected the Mani group's prayer to dismiss the interlocutory application filed along with the original lawsuit.
The petitioner had also requested the court to prevent Mr Mani from discharging any functions and powers attached to the office of the chairman, including holding meetings, taking disciplinary actions, sending a letter to the Election Commission of India intimating his election or any such other matters based on the said election till the disposal of the suit.
Welcoming the court's decision, KC (M) Idukki district president (Joseph faction) M. J. Jacob said the court had accepted Mr Joseph's position of working chairman holding the charge of chairman as per the constitution of the party.
According to legal experts, the court's decision has put Mr Mani in a spot as he is unable to approach ECI, to endorse him as the party chairman. Mr Mani said he would take further steps after discussing with his lawyers after receiving the order. He claimed that the court had put some restrictions only, which would not affect his activities as chairman.
"The court has prevented me only in some activities that include initiating disciplinary action against the party workers. It will no way affect my functioning as party chairman, elected by the state committee members as per party constitution. The court's order won't affect the election process," he said....