Amidst protest from cadres, CPM to announce candidates today
Thiruvananthapuram: The CPM candidates for the Assembly polls will be announced on Wednesday. The CPM will announce the list by 11 am excluding Devikulam and a few other seats. The CPM may stand firm on the candidates list dismissing the wide anger and disenchantment that is prevailing regarding candidates selection in some seats. The party has so far not taken any decision to change the candidates list taking note of the domestic protests that is going on in a few places including Ponnani.
Although the discontent brewing inside the CPM over candidates selection spilled out in open with a protest held in Ponnani in Malappuram and Kuttiady in Kozhikode, while posters opposing the omission of senior party leaders appeared in Alappuzha, the party is likely to go by its diktat of not fielding candidates who faced polls two consecutive terms. CPM is expected to officially declare the candidates on Wednesday.
Out of 140 assembly seats, CPM this time is likely to contest in 85 seats as against 92 seats it contested last assembly polls including party supported independent candidates.
Party insiders said that the list of candidates prepared by state secretariat that was discussed by state committee didn't include at least 22 sitting MLAs and five ministers in the list.
CPM heavyweights Industries Minister EP Jayarajan, Finance Minister TM Thomas Isaac, Public Works Minister G Sudhakaran, Law Minister AK Balan and Education Minister C Raveendranath are unlikely to contest this time.
When separate posters appeared in Alappuzha urging Sudhakaran and Thomas Isaac to contest polls, both leaders distanced themselves from it and toed the party line.
Meanwhile, protests in Ponnani and Kuttiyadi where hundreds of CPM supporters took out march is being viewed seriously by the party and a last-minute check and balance will be on cards when announcing the final list, according to party sources.
The bone of contention in Ponnani was the state secretariat decision to field CITU national secretary P Nandakumar instead of CPM district secretariat member TM Siddique against which party workers marched shouting slogans by Lenin "Party will correct its leaders, People will correct the Party''.
While in Kuttiady the protest was against the decision to give the seat to Kerala Congress (M) led by Jose K Mani, the new entrant to the Left Democratic Front.
When CPM handed over 25 seats to CPI, it's close ally cutting down two seats, KC(M) who bargained for close to 15 seats initially with its good performance in local body polls will be getting close to 13 seats, according to sources.
Loktantrik Janata Dal (LJD) led by MV Shreyams Kumar, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Indian National League ( INL ) are being offered three seats each while Janata Dal (Secular) may sail through with four seats in the final list.