The United Democratic Front’s politics in the Kochi Corporation is turning murkier over the reshuffle of chairpersons of Standing Committees.
While the District Congress Committee president, the ‘I’ faction, and UDF district chairman M.M. Francis claimed that the front constituents had agreed for reallocation of portfolios, the other front partners, namely the Indian Union Muslim League and Socialist Janatha (Democratic), denied knowledge of any such decision.
V.J. Poulose, the DCC president, said UDF constituents had agreed for the reshuffling of posts of chairpersons and none had objected to the proposal at the UDF meeting.
The formalities for sharing of power, including the date for submitting the resignation, would be decided at a meeting of the front partners on Sunday, he said.
A senior ‘I’ faction leader said all the Standing Committee chairpersons of the Kochi Corporation would put in their papers early next week.
The meeting of the front partners would also initiate a discussion on the reallocation of power and the new heads of the Standing Committees. Most probably, all the chairpersons would submit their resignation on Wednesday or latest by Thursday. New faces would be selected after discussions in the front and the party, he said. Mr. Francis also maintained that the front partners had agreed to implement the power-sharing agreement at a recent meeting of the front. The front partners had earlier entered into an understanding on the sharing of power.
At the same time, M.P. Abdul Khader, district president of the IUML, said the nominee of the party would not resign.
The party had not agreed to or discussed any such proposals. If at all a decision in this regard had to be taken, the party would demand the post of Deputy Mayor, which was offered to it earlier, he said.
Mr. Khader charged that the hullabaloo raised by a faction in the Congress under the pretext of sharing power was aimed at defeating the UDF candidate in the upcoming Parliament election.
The faction was attempting to destabilise the UDF in the district so as to ensure the defeat of the front’s candidate, he said.