Decks cleared for VS' new role

Decks cleared for VS' new role

Decks cleared for VS' new role

 The state government on Monday formally cleared the proposal to amend a law aimed at appointing CPM veteran V S Achuthanandan as chairman of the Administrative Reforms Commission.

The government has been discussing options of the amendment in a reported move to accommodate Achuthanandan in a new position after the CPM central leadership picked Pinarayi Vijayan, over the 92-year-old Achuthanandan, as the state’s new chief minister. The draft bill, expected to be presented during the ongoing budget session of the Legislative Assembly, will ensure that the appointment to the post with Cabinet rank does not run into legal hurdles over dual office; Achuthanandan is also an MLA from Malampuzha in Palakkad district.

An official statement on Cabinet decisions on Monday carried a one-line confirmation on the move. “The Cabinet has cleared the draft bill for the proposed amendment in connection with the Administrative Reforms Commission,” the statement said. “I’ll respond after studying the details,” Achuthanandan told reporters.

Achuthanandan had led the successful Left campaign ahead of the May 16 Assembly election but his advanced age and related health issues were cited as reasons by the CPM for its decision to appoint Vijayan as the chief minister.

Achuthanandan had earlier denied that he was in talks with the party’s central leadership for an alternative position as a “compromise”.

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