Opposition to refocus its attention to the stir over solar scam
After allowing speculations about a possible alternative to the Oommen Chandy government with Kerala Congress(M) leader K.M. Mani at its helm to flare up for over a week and at times inflaming it further, the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and the CPI appear to have veered round to the position that all such talk has cost them dearly.
The State secretariats of the two parties, which met here on Wednesday, decided not to contribute further to the media speculations in this regard and refocus their attention to the ongoing agitation over the ‘solar scam.’ The CPI(M) secretariat did not discuss the issue at length. The attempt at the CPI(M) secretariat was to play down the whole issue: the consensus being that the Left Democratic Front (LDF) should wait for rifts within the ruling alliance to lead up to a break-up before jumping into the fray.
At the CPI secretariat meeting, State secretary Pannian Ravindran was at the receiving end of some sharp criticism for his statements on Tuesday almost favouring an alternative government and advised not to issue statements without wide consultations within the party.
In a statement, the CPI secretariat warned the Chandy government of stronger agitations over the solar scam and demanded immediate resignation of Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, Home Minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan, and Union Minister of State Kodikunnil Suresh.
The Revolutionary Socialist Party State secretariat too did not appear too enthused by the idea of engineering the downfall of the Chandy government and would only say that if an opportunity came up, the LDF should discharge its democratic responsibility to provide an alternative.
The Janata Dal (Secular) and the Kerala Congress led by P.C. Thomas were sharper in their response and went on record that there was no question of their agreeing to any alliance with Mr. Mani.
Reacting to reports that the LDF might go in for an experiment projecting Mr. Mani, JD(S) State president Mathew T. Thomas said an alternative to the Oommen Chandy government should come to power only with a fresh mandate.
Mr. Thomas also questioned Mr. Mani’s secular credentials and pointed out that any adjustment with the KC(M) was bound to be short-lived.