Thiruvananthapuram: An emergency meeting of the LDF on Sunday sealed the fate of transport minister Thomas Chandy by entrusting Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan to take a decision on his resignation.
CPI state secretary Kanam Rajendran and former secretary Pannian Raveendran, who met the reporters after the meeting, hinted that Mr Chandy’s resignation was imminent. The NCP would be given two more days to decide on Mr Chandy as the party’s state executive committee is scheduled to meet on Tuesday. If the NCP wavers, the chief minister will make the final call.
The differences of opinion led to heated arguments in the meeting. The NCP representatives said that the case filed by the minister in the High Court against the collector’s report on the encroachment of the backwaters was to come up on Tuesday. Therefore, they wanted that a decision on Mr Chandy should be deferred till the court gave its verdict. But the CPI members said the case was only at the preliminary stage and that the decision must not be delayed. The legal advice received on the issue must also be taken into consideration, they said.
None of the LDF allies supported the NCP as the CPI and Janata Dal (secular) adopted a strong stand against the minister.
Mr Kanam Rajendran took strong exception to Mr Chandy’s outburst against his detractors at a public meeting addressed by him (Kanam) and the case filed by Mr Chandy in the court against the Alappuzha collector’s report. Mr Chandy said his speech was against the UDF leaders not aimed at Mr Kanam.
Mr Kanam, however, pressed for Mr Chandy’s resignation as his actions had hit the government’s image. “It will be shameful if the chief minister has to force Chandy to resign,” he said. The NCP leaders kept mum on his remarks.
The Congress(S) also insisted on Mr Chandy’s exit and criticised his moving the court. CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan opined that the NCP should be allowed to take a decision on the issue.
NCP state president T.P. Peethambaran Master told mediapersons that the party had agreed with the decisions taken at the meeting....