The Kerala Congress(B) is likely to issue a whip to its lone member in the Assembly, Forest Minister K.B. Ganesh Kumar, during the coming session of the House beginning February 1 and make an attempt to force his disqualification if he violates the whip.
Kerala Congress(B) general secretary Venugopalan Nair met Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee president Ramesh Chennithala here on Monday and sought an early settlement to the issues his party chairman R. Balakrishna Pillai had raised with regard to the functioning of its member in the Cabinet, failing which the party would be constrained to take it to the floor of the Assembly.
Mr. Pillai later said that he would have to take a harsh position even though he did not wish to adopt a stand that would be detrimental to the ruling United Democratic Front (UDF). He felt slighted by the UDF leadership, which had failed to find a solution to the problems he had with his son, Mr. Ganesh Kumar.
Kerala Congress(B) sources said the party had sought legal opinion on its moves on the floor of the House against its lone member. The legal advice the party got is that the power of issuing the whip is with the person who has issued the party symbol to the candidate. In this case, the party symbol was issued by the Kerala Congress (B) general secretary at the time when Mr. Pillai was in jail undergoing a sentence. It is this provision of the anti-defection law that Mr. Pillai would be invoking, if at all he goes ahead with his plans, the sources said.