Kerala: Following churn in Congress, yet another top leader joins CPM

Kerala: Following churn in Congress, yet another top leader joins CPM

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CPM leader Kodiyeri Balakrishnan receiving former KPCC general secretary K P Anil Kumar at AKG Centre on Tuesday. Politburo member S Ramachandran Pillai is also seen
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: In another setback to the Congress party, KPCC former general secretary K P Anil Kumar on Tuesday quit the party and joined the CPM.
Former KPCC secretary P S Prashanth, who also faced disciplinary action for criticising the DCC presidents' appointment, had joined the CPM in a similar fashion a few days ago.
Tuesday's developments were dramatic as the dissident leader joined the CPM within four hours of announcing his resignation from the Congress at 8.10am. He was expelled from the Congress by 11.30 am and he joined the CPM at 12.10pm. The CPM had organised a reception to him at the AKG Centre, with three politburo members Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, S Ramachandran Pillai and M A Baby receiving him.
The state Congress leadership was firm about its action. "The party decided to expel him as the explanation given by him was not satisfactory. Anil Kumar is someone who occupied key posts in the party. The kind of statements he made are unacceptable," KPCC president K Sudhakaran said. Opposition leader V D Satheesan also said discipline is paramount in the party.
Ahead of joining the CPM, Anil Kumar lashed out at the state Congress leadership at a news conference. Alleging that the state leadership was behaving in an authoritarian manner, he asked why there was no disciplinary action against senior leaders Oommen Chandy and Ramesh Chennithala who also raised similar charges against the state leadership.
He said he could lead the state Youth Congress without succumbing to factional pressures for five years from 2002 to 2007, and he and his colleagues had an important role in keeping youths within the party fold when veteran leader K Karunakaran left it to form his own party.
"When I was denied opportunities in the party, I never went to hold talks with the BJP or Sangh Parivar. Sudhakaran has admitted that he was ready to talk with Sangh Parivar if he was denied the KPCC president's post. Only a person with a Sangh Parivar mindset can think of joining them. When such a person is heading the party in Kerala, how will there be democracy and secularism in the Congress," he asked.
He also blamed AICC general secretary K C Venugopal for the present crisis in the party. “Venugopal has a huge role in the latest developments. He wants everything to be under his control,” he said.
Anil Kumar said he had to pay a price for ignoring group equations as he was kept away from organisational positions for long. He had worked for the Congress for four decades and he was made a KPCC general secretary when Ramesh Chennithala became president. He had served as KPCC general secretary under V M Sudheeran, M M Hassan and Mullappally Ramachandran.
He said he was denied a seat to contest in 2016 and 2021 assembly elections. He wanted to contest from Koyilandi seat in Kozhikode but was asked to contest from Vattiyoorkavu in Thiruvananthapuram. Later, he was not allotted the seat following local protests. It was all orchestrated, he said.
Anil Kumar was accompanied by Prashanth to the AKG Centre. "The Congress is disintegrating and Anil Kumar was a key leader of the party responsible for organisational affairs," Kodiyeri said while admitting him to the party.
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