Nation Other News 23 Apr 2017 CM Pinarayi Vijayan ...

CM Pinarayi Vijayan faces ‘I'm State’ poser

Published Apr 23, 2017, 6:31 am IST
Updated Apr 23, 2017, 7:11 am IST
A scene from Pappathichola on Saturday. — arrangement
 A scene from Pappathichola on Saturday. — arrangement

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: CPI’s Idukki district secretary, Mr K K Sivaraman’s comment that Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan should not delude himself to think “I am the State” is not a naive comment by a petty commissar on the high ranges but reflects the thinking among the party top brass. Revenue Minister E. Chandrasekharan was quick to deny this, terming it as Mr Sivaraman’s personal opinion. But if there is any credence to the maxim, “Never believe anything in politics until it has been officially denied”, the implication is that it is true. Even before Mr Sivaraman’s comment was published, a top CPI leader, while tracing developments associated with the cross demolition, told DC that Mr Chadrasekharan had rung up Mr Vijayan on Friday morning, alerting him of the operation. However, Mr Vijayan later claimed no knowledge of it all. The leaders said: “He didn’t know, but his Minister knew. Does the CM pretend that ‘I am the State’ ”?  

Whatever be the political import of “I am the State” comment, there is a palpable sense of disquiet and disconnect between the two major parties at the top echelons of the Government. The open spat between Mr Vijayan and CPI State secretary Kanam Rajendran bares it all. The disconnectedness is again evident in the press release put out by the CM’s office after the high-level Munnar meeting on Friday. The release says the meeting decided to broad-base the decision-making process prior to evictions by referring it to an omnibus committee, including local netas and even media persons. An official who attended the meeting said this was but a suggestion, which was least practical because evictions are based on Revenue assessment of violations and enforcing the law. The Revenue Department has a well-laid protocol for eviction but violators would raise the bogey of dispossession to unnerve the officials, as it happened with the operation on land misappropriated by a former Health department official in Munnar two weeks before the cross demolition.

CPI sources claim the best of relations between the party and the CPM at the organizational level but the hitch is in the party versus the Government. It was only a week back Mr Kanam Rajendran touched on the raw nerve, when he listed instances of Left deviation by the LDF Government, be it killing of the Maoists, indiscriminate imposition of UAPA (later admitted by DGP) and mishandling of engineering student Jishnu Prannoy’s mother Mahija’s agitation. The CPM reply was a poor match to Kanam’s logic and rhetoric. Be that as it may, there is a lurking fear of a throwback to the 1967-69 EMS Namboodiripad ministry, when the CPM-CPI dispute over land distribution was the prelude to a full-blown crisis and the collapse of the ministry. The overall sentiment in the LDF hovers on the coalition dharma, the lynchpin of which is collective responsibility and the Chief Minister being a leader and coordinator like the late C Achutha Menon, who is still hailed for his qualities. Even the late E K Nayanar held the team together, submitting himself to the overall supervision by the party.

Location: India, Kerala


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