Relief for Cong-led UDF in Kerala as IUML reiterates support

by IANS |

Thiruvananthapuram, Nov 21 (IANS) Congress, which leads the United Democratic Front opposition has heaved a sigh of relief after IUML supremo Panakkad Sadiqali Shihab Thangal said his party has no plans to leave the UDF as speculation was rising.


“We will not move an inch from our stand and for a change in our political thoughts. We do not want to take a ‘bank’ route. And if anyone is harboring hope that we will change our political thoughts, it can well be put to rest for good,” said Thangal.


Over the years the IUML has been blowing hot and cold, trying to get an upper hand especially when Congress has come under duress. In 2011, when the Oommen Chandy government completed its full five-year term with a majority of just two seats in the 140-member Kerala Assembly, then the IUML flexed its muscle and got a fifth cabinet post.


For a while now the CPI(M)-led ruling Left Front government of Pinarayi Vijayan has been going through tough times and with the upcoming Lok Sabha polls round the corner they have been trying their best to woo the IUML.


Not one to lose any opportunity, the CPI(M) tried its best to unsettle the Congress when they invited the IUML to a pro Palestine rally, but the Congress heaved a sigh of relief after IUML decided not to accept the invite.


Then came the second olive branch from the CPI(M), when they praised the IUML and tried to woo it to join CM Vijayan’s ongoing statewide yatra. The IUML, however, rejected it.


On Tuesday morning, the Left Front convenor E.P. Jayarajan praised IUML veteran legislator P.K. Kunhalikutty as a leader of substance.


“There are several things which are happening in the IUML,” said Jayarajan giving enough indications that the statement of Thangal does not mean much.


The speculation about IUML leaving the UDF coalition were ripe and strengthened after an IUML legislator was nominated to the director board of the Kerala Bank, presently in total control of the CPI(M)-led Left Front and also when the news spread that an IUML party office-bearer was present at the yatra led by Vijayan, an event which was boycotted by the Congress-led UDF.

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