Kerala

Daunting task awaits CPI(M) ahead of polls

A daunting task awaits the Communist Party of India (Marxist) ahead of the Assembly polls next year. It has to satisfy all its allies when seats are shared among the Left Democratic Front (LDF) constituents.

The recent entry of the Jose K. Mani faction of the Kerala Congress (M) into the front and new constituents, the Loktantrik Janata Dal (LJD) and the Indian National League (INL), have made the task challenging for its leaders.

Sources said that the party would have to sacrifice some of the seats it had contested last time and reduce the number of seats of existing allies, including that of the Communist Party of India (CPI) and the Janata Dal (Secular). Last time, the CPI(M) and the CPI had contested 90 and 27 seats respectively.

Impasse over seat-sharing is likely to surface after the three-tier local body elections in December this year as the Jose K. Mani faction and the LJD have reportedly staked claim for 12 and seven seats respectively.

Bone of contention

The Jose K. Mani faction has reportedly struck a deal with the CPI(M) for at least six seats, including the contentious Pala Assembly segment which is now represented by Mani C. Kappan of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP). Such an arrangement is likely with an immin ent split in the NCP as the late NCP leader and former Minister Thomas Chandy’s brother Thomas K. Thomas is reportedly planning to contest from Kuttanad on the LDF ticket.

LJD

Sources said the LJD, which had contested and lost all seven seats when the party was with the United Democratic Front as Janata Dal (United) in the 2016 polls, was expected to contest at least from five segments, including Vadakara. That means the JD(S) would have to be contented with four seats.

The INL, which had been inducted into the LDF before the Lok Sabha polls, also looks forward to contesting in four seats. Last time when the party had an electoral understanding with the CPI(M)-led coalition, it contested and lost all three seats, including the Kozhikode South segment.

Minor partners

Besides, the CPI(M) has to accommodate the National Secular Conference led by P.T.A. Rahim, which had contested and won two seats — Kunnamangalam and Koduvally — last time. The other minor partners such as the Congress (S), Kerala Congress (Scaria Thomas), Kerala Congress (B), Janadhipathya Kerala Congress, Communist Marxist Party (Aravindakshan), and the Revolutionary Socialist party (Leninist) had also contested in the previous election.

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Printable version | Nov 26, 2020 4:03:54 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/daunting-task-awaits-cpim-ahead-of-polls/article32922619.ece

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