THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Hundreds of Left Democratic Front activists today took part in the Secretariat March here demanding the resignation of Kerala Finance Minister K M Mani in the wake of corruption charges levelled against him in the liquor bar license issue.
Inaugurating the march called by CPI-M led LDF Opposition, veteran Marxist leader V S Achuthandan said the front would intensify its agitation if Mani did not quit.
Achuthanandan alleged that Chief Minister Oommen Chandy was protecting Mani and had no time for administration. The Vigilance probe ordered into the case was not going to reveal the truth, he added.
As part of the LDF agitation, marches were held in the districts also. The Kerala Bar Owners Association Working Vice-President Biju Ramesh had alleged that Mani had taken Rs one crore from owners and demanded Rs five crore on the promise of reopening 418 closed bars.
The UDF Government a few months ago had ordered closure of all bars, except those attached to five-star hotels as part of its move to take the state to total prohibition in 10 years.
However, the high court permitted hotels in four star and heritage category also to operate bars.
Earlier Government had declined to renew licenses of 418 bars for lack of required facilities.