The Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee has decided to continue its preparations for the Lok Sabha elections in an attempt to tilt the political situation in its favour.

The party’s leadership meeting, comprising former PCC presidents, office-bearers of the Congress Legislature Party and the KPCC, and DCC presidents, met at the Indira Bhavan to review the political situation.

It decided to go ahead with the programmes announced earlier, including the proposed vehicle campaign led by DCC presidents, even while awaiting the high command’s decision on a new PCC president.

Addressing a press conference after the meeting, KPCC president and Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala said the meeting was of the opinion that the UDF and the Congress had a chance of repeating its 2009 performance in the Lok Sabha elections.

The CPI(M) and the LDF were at their “weakest” since almost all its agitations against the government had turned out to be miserable failures.

“The LDF’s graph has progressively gone down with the failure of its agitations. This shows that the agitation methods adopted by the CPI(M) and the LDF are not acceptable to the people. The LDF had alienated itself from the common man. If the UDF and the Congress were to wake up and fight the elections in a united manner, it would repeat its 2009 record,” Mr. Chennithala said.

The agitations had failed because of the torrid schism and decay in the CPI(M). He said he expected the high command to nominate the new KPCC president without delay.

The meeting also decided to continue the process of reconstitution of the lower level of the party hierarchy and complete it by January 15.

The meeting discussed the Kasturirangan committee report and the LPG cylinder issue. Mr. Chennithala said Mr. Chandy informed the meeting that the government would withdraw VAT on the subsidy component for the LPG cylinders.

The matter was brought up in the Assembly through a call attention motion moved by Congress MLA Sivadasan Nair.

The KPCC also passed a resolution urging the Centre to bring back the administered pricing mechanism and divest oil companies of the power to fix prices of petroleum products.

It turned out to be a farewell of sorts for Mr. Chennithala who completed nine years as PCC president.

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