Kodiyeri says ready for by-polls, confident, says Mullappally
KOTTAYAM: With the announcement of the by-polls in Pala assembly constituency lying vacant after the demise of former minister K M Mani, the three fronts have activated candidate discussions. As usual, the LDF leadership has announced that Pala seat belongs to the NCP and announced Mani C Kappan as the candidate. However, with the demise of Mani, the Kerala Congress is yet to decide on its candidature. Anyway it will be tough for the UDF in choosing the candidates as the dispute between P J Joseph and Jose K Mani factions have not yet been solved. The NDA camps have not begun discussions on the candidate. There is speculation that either P C George's son or P C Thomas will be the NDA candidate.
Meantime, CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan said the Left Front is all ready to face the by-polls. This time the Left Front is sure to win with a majority in Pala. It will be a headache for the UDF as the Kerala Congress is divided into two groups. The misconception among the people regarding the Sabarimala issue during Lok Sabha elections has now changed. The devotees are convinced that the UDF and the BJP have been deceiving them. The present political situation is now favourable for the left front. The rest of the things will be decided by the LDF, he said.
However, KPCC chief Mullappally Ramachandran said they are fully confident with the polls. The disputes in the Kerala Congress will not affect the polls. The UDF will face the polls collectively. In the meantime, Jose K Mani came forward denying the news that his wife Nisha Jose K Mani will contest the polls. He said no discussions were held so far. After the UDF meet to be convened tomorrow, the candidate will be decided in a democratic manner. Let the election commission decided on the poll symbol. It is heard that Nisha or Jose K Mani is likely to contest as the UDF candidate.
Soon after the demise of Mani, the NDA camp had held discussions on the candidate. The BJP Kottayam district unit had opposed fielding P C George's son Shaun George as the candidate. However, George is of the view that as they are new party in the NDA will not make a claim in the Pala seat. George added that the right candidate would be fielded in Pala and this time they have a chance of victory. It is also heard that P C Thomas, who contested from Kottayam in the Lok Sabha elections, will be given the Pala seat.