Staff Reporter

To decide on continuing in the LDF fold

A section wants party to enter poll fray on its own

Fears that severing ties will send a wrong signal

KOZHIKODE: The State executive committee of the Janata Dal (Secular) (JD-S) will meet at the Malabar Palace here at 10 a.m. on Wednesday to decide the future course of action of the party, particularly whether it should continue in the Left Democratic Front (LDF) coalition following the denial of the Kozhikode Lok Sabha seat.

On Monday, the party representative in the V.S. Achuthanandan Ministry, Mathew T. Thomas, submitted his resignation in protest against the decision of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPI-M) to swap its sitting Kozhikode constituency with the newly-created Wayanad constituency.

The crucial meeting will be attended by 62 members, including its State president M.P.Veerendrakumar, general secretary K. Krishnankutty, national secretary Varghese George, five legislators, K.P. Mohanan, Mathew T. Thomas, M.V. Shreyams Kumar, M.K. Premnath and Jose Thettayil.

The Yuva Janata Dal State committee is also holding a meeting immediately after the State executive committee of the Janata Dal (S).

A senior functionary of the party told The Hindu here on Tuesday that a section of the committee wanted to break ties with the coalition and enter the fray on its own in some of the constituencies where the party has influence, especially in Vadakara, Kozhikode, Palakkad and Alathur.

Another option before the committee is to withdraw its nominees from civic bodies where it is in power with the CPI(M). But others, mostly inclined to socialist ideology, insist that the party remain within the LDF fold. They say that the party had already lodged its protest by withdrawing its lone Minister from the Cabinet. Severing ties with a front, which the party has been associating for, nearly three-decades, would send wrong signals at the national-level when both the Janata Dal (S) and the Left parties are attempting to rejuvenate the Third Front.

A fresh opinion has also emerged among some of the office-bearers that the party should have a rethink on the Wayanad Lok Sabha seat which the CPI(M) had offered.

This is not the first time the Janata Dal (S) is meeting to decide whether it should walk out of the LDF coalition. More than a year ago, the party had to confront a similar issue following the Deshabhimani carrying out a malicious campaign against Mr. Veerendrakumar and his family. Then the party State committee meeting registered its protest but decided to stay with the LDF.