THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Though BJP state president P.S. Sreedharan Pillai has lost out in the tug of war with general secretary K. Surendran over the Pathanamthitta seat, Pillai has a chance of contesting from Wayanad if Congress president Rahul Gandhi decides to seek the mandate from there, it is said.
Mr Pillai was denied Pathanamthitta by the national leadership thr-ough the machinations of organising national joint secretary B. L. Santosh, V. Muraleed-haran, MP and the RSS.
National president Amit Shah has insisted that Thiruvananthapur-am and Pathanamthitta should be won at any cost, as they fall in the A-category along with Palakkad, Thrissur and Kasaragod constituencies. Funds will pour in for the above seats. Sreedharan Pillai was counting on the goodwill he had earned from the NSS and Christian communities to capture Pathanamthitta, but Surendran was backed by the state RSS after he waged a battle on the Sabarimala issue by even going to jail.
A BJP office-bearer told DC that Santhosh and former BJP state president Muraleedh-aran had clinched the Pathanamthitta seat for Surendran. “Surendran, who was previously bas-ed in Kasaragod, Kozhi-kode and Thrissur, shif-ted to Pathanamthitta when Sabarimala occupied centre stage, and the RSS sided with him,” he said.
Veteran BJP leader and former South India organising general secretary P. P. Mukundan told DC that Sreeedh-aran Pillai and his team had forgotten the ordinary party workers and accommodated Tom Va-dakkan, K. S. Radhak-rishnan, G. Raman Nair and Alphons Kannant-hanam overnight in key posts.
“How can Sreedharan Pillai ignore those who have worked for the party right from the freedom movement? Raman Nair had even sent scores of BJP workers to jail during the Emergency period,” said Mukundan.
But a BJP leader told DC that Sreedharan Pillai will be able to lead the campaign more effectively now ....