Sonia's Kerala trip to reassure UDF allies

Sonia's Kerala trip to reassure UDF allies

Sonia's Kerala trip to reassure UDF allies

Ahead of Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s two-day visit to Kerala that commences on September 29, the ruling United Democratic Front (UDF) looks far from being united.

The Congress-led government has been through a flurry of scams, controversies and recurring faction fights over the past couple of months, making the party chief visit vital for instilling some vigour back into the UDF.

Allies miffed with the Congress alleged ‘Big Brother’ mode of functioning have been seeking reassurance from the party’s top brass.

 With four events squeezed into a tight schedule of less than 24 hours, Sonia is unlikely to hold detailed deliberations to sort the front’s internal issues but the visit itself could work as a welcome distraction from the voices of dissent.

The government had, earlier this year, hit rough weather over an internal power struggle that led to KPCC president Ramesh Chennithala being denied a Cabinet portfolio. Soon, the party found itself in the middle of the solar panel fraud case with  Chief Minister Oommen Chandy’s office coming under the scanner for alleged corruption.  

The government Chief Whip P C George wrote to Sonia seeking intervention to help the government regain credibility. 

Congress’ allies, including the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML), and senior party leaders have varied takes on these issues, often cornering Chandy, who continued to claim that all was well within the front.