KERALA

AICC move will not solve crisis: Murali

KOZHIKODE OCT. 26. The Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president, K. Muraleedharan, MP, has expressed his displeasure over the decision of the All India Congress Committee (AICC) to issue show cause notices to K. Sudhakaran and P. T. Thomas of the anti-Karunakaran group and Kadavoor Sivadasan and P. Sankaran of the Karunakaran faction.

At a news conference at his residence here today, Mr. Muraleedharan accused the high command of being selective in issuing show cause notices to three Ministers and one MLA attached to two camps of the Congress party. The decision would not serve any purpose to solve the crisis at the present juncture.

Mr. Muraleedharan said that the AICC general secretary in charge of party affairs in the State, Ahmed Patel, had informed him about the high command decision. However, he was yet to receive a copy of the decision taken by the AICC, he added.

The KPCC president said that seeking explanation from Mr. Sivadasan and Mr. Sankaran could not be justified. Their reported statements of the Ministers against Mr. Antony did not reveal any anti-party activity, he said.

Disciplinary action needs to be initiated against several leaders of the anti-Karunakaran faction, he said. Mr. Muraleedharan said that he would abide by the decision of the high command although he knew that suspending a few members or serving show cause notices to some of them would not solve the problem in the Congress party. At this stage, no positive solution was likely to come up before December 1, he added.

Replying to a query on his "secret" meeting with the IUML leader, E. Ahmed, MP, in Kozhikode the other day, Mr. Muraleedharan said that the IUML had its own stand on the issue of leadership change. The party's leaders would speak out during their talks with the high command. He reacted sharply to the "allegation" by the Forest Minister, K. Sudhakaran, that the KPCC president had misused the funds mobilised for the construction of a new party building. He said that he would not mind taking legal steps against those persons, even if they were party members, if they tried to defame him.

Sankaran clarifies stance

Our Staff Reporter writes from Thrissur: Mr. Sankaran has said that he has not been able to understand why the high command has sent him a show-cause notice because he has not criticised A. K. Antony as the Chief Minister of the State, but has only expressed his political opinion.

Talking to mediapersons here today, Mr. Sankaran said that if praising Mr. Karunakaran was tantamount to indiscipline, he would continue to do that.

`Distinguish between groups'

Our Staff Reporter writes from Kochi: The Congress high command should distinguish between persons who oppose it and obey it, the Tourism Minister, K. V. Thomas, has said.

Talking to mediapersons here today, Prof. Thomas said that a section of Congressmen had openly disobeyed the directives of the party high command many a time and attempted to dethrone the UDF Government since its inception. However, a few others had been abiding by the party leadership and taking efforts to protect the UDF Government. The party leadership should be able to distinguish between these two groups, he said.

Prof. Thomas clarified that he had not been served with any show-cause notice by the party high command.

PTI adds: Mr. Sivadasan said that what he had stated about the party affairs was only the ``truth'' and he was prepared to face any punishment for that.

He said that he would give his explanation after he received the notice.

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