Ummid Assistant

Indian students in Germany need not pay to study: Envoy

Microsoft offers tech courses to Indian academia

Welcome Guest! You are here: Home » Politics

Congress at war with itself in Kerala

Thursday November 08, 2012 01:55:45 PM, Sanu George, IANS

Thiruvananthapuram: The Congress is at war with itself in Kerala and at least one leader says this is affecting governance while another says he will continue to air their grievances against the party. There is even a suggestion that the ruling United Democratic Front (UDF) could come apart if the infighting and faction-feuding continues.

Not long ago, the tussle was between the factions led by the late K. Karunakaran and (now Defence Minister) A.K. Antony. Today the factionalism continues with different actors.

The feud today is led on one side by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and on the other by state Congress president Ramesh Chennithala, who has with him a majority of the erstwhile Karunakaran group and some leaders of the (Overseas Indian Affairs Minister) Vayalar Ravi group.

This doesn't bode well for the party, says Karunakaran's son, K. Muraleedharan.

"There are issues that have strained the smooth functioning and the best thing would be a meeting to be called which could well sort out all unpleasant issues that are now boiling," Muraleedharan said.

Till the 2011 assembly polls, the Chandy-Chennithala duo had combined well for around six years, but things went for a toss the moment the latter threw in his cap for the chief minister's post.

This was seen as a challenge by the Chandy camp, as there was an unwritten understanding that if the Congress won the polls, Chandy would become the chief minister.

From then on, things went haywire as both of them wanted the maximum seats for their respective camp followers. As a result, selection of candidates became tough and not the best got selected after seats were allocated on the basis of caste and creed.

When the results came in, the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) had a minuscule majority of just four seats in the 140-member Kerala assembly.

And when Chennithala sought to be the parliamentary party leader, a call came from Delhi hours before the meeting asking him to make a public statement that he was not in the running for the plum post.

Since then, for all practical purposes, the once smoothly functioning Chandy-Chennithala duo got strained and this continues even now.

Things have now reached a crescendo as the warring factions, even more than a year after starting talks to revamp the organisation at all levels, are yet to come to an understanding. The duo often states that the revamp will happen after they return from meeting the national leadership, but all such trips have turned out to be a damp squib.

Another pointer that all is not well within the Congress here is the emergence of a new group of Congress legislators that calls itself the Green Brigade and has the secret blessings of Chennithala. For some time now, they have been giving sleepless nights to Chandy and his camp.

The Green Brigade is led by V.D. Satheesan, who has with him T.N. Pratapan and V.T. Balaram. They lose no opportunity to come out in the open against the policies of the Chandy government.

With close to a dozen TV channels operating in the state, the three are the most sought after guests on news programmes and debates, where they frequently take on the Chandy government.

When things went a bit too far, Satheesan and Pratapan were summoned to Delhi by Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi, after which they appeared to take a break. In the past week, they have, however, resumed their Chandy bashing.

On Monday UDF convenor P.P.Thankachan, a former state Congress chief, suggested that Pratapan pipe down, but he refused to do so.

"I don't care and I will raise these issues at party forums and even in public and I am not worried about the outcome," Pratapan said at a public meeting Monday evening.

Chief whip in Kerala Assembly P.C.George added a new twist when he said that in the best interests of all concerned, those who speak out should not forget that Chandy's was a coalition government.

"If a few Congress legislators do not want this Congress government in office, then we are not bound to prop up such a government. The Congress party has to settle their issues because all accepted levels of patience are over," said George, the vice chairman of the Kerala Congress (Mani), the third biggest ally of the UDF.

Chandy and Chennithala were to have travelled to New Delhi Wednesday for talks on the revamp issue. This has now been delayed indefinitely, meaning it will take a while before the Congress can get its house in order.

(Sanu George can be contacted at




Home | Top of the Page


Note: By posting your comments here you agree to the terms and conditions of

Comments powered by DISQUS



More Headlines

29 die in Guatemala quake

Over 3.5 lakh poor to get free LPG cylinders in Delhi

China will not copy Western system in political reform: Hu

EC rejects Swamy's plea to derecognise Congress

BJP reposes 'full faith' in Gadkari

Kids banned for dirty school dress: Bihar orders probe

Blair was wrong in invading Iraq, says his spin doctor

Taslimiddin quits Nitish's JD-U, joins Lalu's RJD

Governor can't bypass government on Lokayukta, Gujarat tells SC

Clash over Bengal land acquisition, 33 injured

We will 'socially engineer' votes away from Modi: Gordhan Zadaphia


Top Stories

'Forward': Barack Obama again rewrites history

Chanting "Yes We Can", Barack Hussein Obama made history four years ago as he became America's first African-American president. On Tuesday, he did it again to retain the world's most powerful office.  »

Obama third consecutive president to retain office

The best is yet to come, says triumphant Obama


  Most Read

Mitt Romney concedes defeat

Republican Mitt Romney conceded defeat in the US presidential elections and congratulated Barack Obama for winning a second term in the White House. Addressing a gathering of cheering supporters in Boston   »

We will 'socially engineer' votes away from Modi: Gordhan Zadaphia

Once a trusted aide of Narendra Modi, former Gujarat minister Gordhan Zadaphia is out of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and believes that the Gujarat Parivartan Party (GPP) he has joined will do what Mayawati  »

Gujarat Elections: Survey predicts landslide win for BJP


  News Pick

Electricity load shedding - Blessing for Powerloom weavers?

Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan’s announcement that the state will be ‘load shedding free’ by the end of 2012 may appear as a new-year gift  »

Eyeing 2014, BJP in Uttar Pradesh bends 'backwards'

Is the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) bending 'backwards', literally, in Uttar Pradesh to realize its national political ambitions? They are tailoring an "all inclusive" major action plan to pitchfork its backward caste leaders as they undertake a major campaign in the country's most populous state  »

Blair was wrong in invading Iraq, says his spin doctor

Former British prime minister Tony Blair committed a mistake by sending his country to war in Iraq, according to Lord Mandelson, a former Labour cabinet minister. Mandelson has been Labour party's former king of  »

Missing: Muslims' thirst for knowledge

There aren’t many public libraries in Dubai. Well, there are some, run by the Dubai government, but they aren’t most popular with the residents. You don’t see a fraction of the crowd that you  »


Picture of the Day

President Pranab Mukherjee, Vice President Mohd. Hamid Ansari, Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh and other dignitaries at a prayer meeting at the Samadhi of former Prime Minister, Late Mrs. Indira Gandhi, on her death anniversary, at Shakti Sthal, in Delhi on October 31, 2012.


Recommend the story to your friends



RSS  |  Contact us


| Quick links



Subscribe to

Ummid Assistant



Science & Technology



About us




Government Schemes










Contact us


The Funny Side

Education & Career

    Disclaimer | Terms of Use | Advertise with us | Link Exchange is part of the Awaz Multimedia & Publications providing World News, News Analysis and Feature Articles on Education, Health. Politics, Technology, Sports, Entertainment, Industry etc. The articles or the views displayed on this website are for public information and in no way describe the editorial views. The users are entitled to use this site subject to the terms and conditions mentioned.

© 2012 Awaz Multimedia & Publications. All rights reserved.