Staff Reporter

Unified party will have ‘two leaves'

as symbol

Membership campaign on top

of the agenda

KOTTAYAM: A joint meeting of the State committees of the Kerala Congress factions headed by K.M. Mani and P.J. Joseph here on Monday approved the proposed merger of the two parties and adopted an interim constitution for the unified party.

Moving the unity resolution, Mr. Mani, chairman of the new party, said the unified party would like to be called Kerala Congress (without any suffix as the Kerala Congress faction led by Mr. Joseph is officially called) with the symbol of ‘two leaves.' “We will approach the Central Election Commission seeking to approve the name and to freeze the symbol ‘cycle' (used by the Joseph faction),” he said.

“However, since it would take some time for the Election Commission to take a final decision on the issue, the unified party would be called Kerala Congress(M), with the symbol ‘two leaves,' during the interim period,” he said. The resolution was supported by Mr. Joseph.

The interim constitution, adopted by the joint meet, basically provides for the new posts created to accommodate senior leaders of the Joseph faction and the 111-member steering committee. There will be a central secretariat above the steering committee. Senior leaders from the KC(M) who had lost their party positions on account of the sharing of posts have been co-opted as general secretaries.

Senior general secretary Joy Abraham, who presented the interim constitution, said a new constitution would come into being within six months. Top on the agenda of the new party, after its formal unity on May 27, will be the completion of the ongoing membership campaign. The unified party will have its first organisational election after the coming local body elections.

KC and State politics

Earlier in his speech, Mr. Mani said the Kerala Congress had always been an indispensable part of the political process in the State and the factions had proved their mettle separately before deciding to join hands. The unity was not for demanding a larger share of power or to defeat anyone, he said and added that the only goal was to empower the toiling class.

Mr. Joseph, in his address, said the Kerala Congress had put forward many slogans during the past four decades of its existence, and most of them had been adopted by other political parties. Now time has come for the party to address the new challenges faced by society. After the joint meeting, Mr. Joseph and his followers returned to the headquarters of the Kerala Congress(M) which they had left in 1987. The joint meeting was preceded by separate meetings of the State committees of the two factions.

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