V.D. Satheesan, Congress MLA from North Paravur, who was appointed as one of the 42 secretaries of the party on Sunday, stands out for his articulation on issues ranging from the Madhav Gadgil committee report to the privatisation of drinking water supply in the State.
Mr. Satheesan, who was on his way to the Assembly session, said he had not received any intimation of his appointment and did not react to the news. He said he had come to know of the development from news reports.
He is the best-known face in a group of young legislators, who have been dubbed in the media as ‘green MLAs’, taking strong stand on environmental issues even at the cost of opposing some of the ruling front’s initiatives.
The Green group came to the fore with the Nelliampathy issue in which the ruling United Democratic Front government dithered on taking over plantations and forested areas past their lease period or had violated lease conditions.
The group spotlighted it by taking the issue above the political divide. Mr. Satheesan was reported in the media as saying that the green MLAs had no political agenda but only an agenda to protect the environment. In the process, the green MLAs incurred the ire of UDF constituents like Kerala Congress (M) but stood their ground.
He was also part of the group of MLAs that wrote to Chief Minister against the CIAL-model company that was proposed for supplying drinking water in the State.
The popularity of Mr. Satheesan, who comes across as a well-informed leader, has been proved over and over again as he is in the state Assembly for the third time in a row, last time defeating CPI strongman Pannian Raveendran in 2011 by more than 11,000 votes.