Special Correspondent

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Congress(M) leader K.M. Mani sprang a surprise on doctors and patients at the General Hospital here on Monday when he donned a new role by leading a party programme to clean up the premises.

With a towel tied around his head and his `mundu' tucked up, the veteran politician started wielding the spade with dexterity. He was accompanied by 200 party workers and leaders including former minister C.F. Thomas; Thomas Chazhikadan, Joseph M. Puthussery and N. Jayaraj, all MLAs, and Youth Front (M) State president Jose K. Mani.

The clean-up operation was organised by the party on its 43rd formation day as part of the drive against the chikungunya scourge sweeping parts of the State. Similar operations were carried out in 14 districts. Addressing party workers on the occasion, Mr. Mani urged the Government to implement the solid waste management programme formulated by the previous UDF regime. He asked the public to extend full support in eliminating the garbage menace.