Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee president Ramesh Chennithala has on Thursday said that the Communist Party of India (Marxist) leadership in the State was worried over the enthusiasm generated among the youth after the visit of AICC General Secretary Rahul Gandhi to campuses here on Wednesday.
Talking to reporters here, Mr. Chennithala said the statements of various CPI (M) leaders, including those of CPI(M) State Secretary Pinarayi Vijayan, made it obvious that the ‘new excitement’ and ‘new enthusiasm’ triggered among the youth by Mr. Gandhi’s visit were making the CPI(M) uneasy.
Reacting to a statement made by the Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI) State Secretary T.V. Rajesh on Thursday that college managements owed an explanation for welcoming Mr. Gandhi to campuses where politics was banned, Mr. Chennithala said Mr. Gandhi had been visiting various other university campuses in the country to interact with the youth. Nobody was stopping other party leaders from making such visits. Whatsoever it may be, Mr. Gandhi’s visit had given him “more acceptability” in Kerala, particularly among the younger generation, he said.
Earlier, Mr. Chennithala said the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) was confident of victory in Alappuzha, Kannur and Ernakulam, where by-elections to the State Assembly would be held on November 7.
The political scenario in the State was congenial to the UDF, courtesy the three-year-long “misrule” of the Left Democratic Front (LDF). A meeting of the KPCC’s election committee to be held on Friday at Ernakulam would discuss the selection of candidates for the three constituencies, he said.
Denying that internal squabbles had already begun in the Congress over candidate selection, Mr. Chennithala said the party was united than ever and there was no such issue at all. The KPCC chief also stated that discussions would be held, if necessary, with leaders of community organisations like the Nair Service Society, if they had any suggestions regarding candidates.
DCC president A.A. Shukoor and others were present.
Keywords: Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee, president, Ramesh Chennithala, Communist Party of India (Marxist), AICC General Secretary Rahul Gandhi, United Democratic Front (UDF), by-elections, Nair Service Society