UDF grappling with seat allocation in Kerala

UDF grappling with seat allocation in Kerala

When the UDF finalised the number of seats to be contested by each constituent little did it expect the identity of the seats to be such a big issue. However, barring the Indian Union Muslim League, most of the others are still bargaining for the winnable seats.

For instance, the Socialist Janata led by M P Veerendrakumar wants Chittoor in Palakkad and a seat other than the Attingal seat they have now been allotted in Thiruvananthapuram, something the Congress is not ready to accede. Similarly, the CMP has been demanding Thiruvananthapuram instead of the Azhikode seat which they had been demanding but had gone to IUML. The KC(M) and KC (Jacob) have also been adamant on a couple of ‘winnable’ seats. A couple of disgruntled KC (M) leaders including an MLA have left the party and are expected to be fielded as LDF candidates.

Complaints galore

Meanwhile, complaints have been pouring to the Congress central election committee against the alleged move by the loyalists of Kerala PCC chief Ramesh Chennithala to corner most of the winnable seats. This even extends to the list of Youth Congress nominees forwarded by Rahul Gandhi for the committee’s consideration. 

What has made the candidates selection difficult in the Congress are the doubts about the chief ministerial prospects of Opposition leader Oommen Chandy in the light of the LDF Government’s move to make him an accused in the palmolein case. With Chandy declaring that he would step down if made an accused, the party had decided to field Ramesh Chennithala also. Union Minister Vayalar Ravi had also expressed his intention to lead the UDF.  The Congress is hoping to thrash out the problem by Monday after Sonia Gandhi arrives from London.