THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Any chance for Kerala Congress veteran K M Mani to don the mantle of a minister again in the present UDF government, which is on its last leg, has dimmed, with the Vigilance Court here deciding on Saturday to examine the case dairy of the bar scam and posting it for February 16.
With the Election Commission notification for the Assembly polls likely to be issued by early March, the scope of any political experiment involving Mani at the last minute has become virtually impossible for the UDF, irrespective of the nature of the order that may be passed by the Vigilance Court. However, Mani braved impending odds as usual and told ‘Express’ that he was not interested in a ministerial berth.
‘’Even if I’m full exonerated now by the court, I don’t want to be a minister at the moment,” Mani said.
Political windmills were working overtime, foreseeing a re-entry of Mani and also the presentation of the last budget of the government. Chief Minister Oommen Chandy himself will present the budget, which is planned for February 12. The budget session of the Assembly is slated for February 5-25. In fact, the budget preparatory exercise is already under way and the chief minister is devoting a lot of time for it. Though Chandy had expressed the wish that Mani would come back, he didn’t commit anything on posers whether the latter would present the budget also.
➤ With the EC notification for the Assembly polls to come in February end or early March, Mani’s ministership is a closed chapter
➤ Don’t want to join the government even if exonerated now, says Mani
➤ Chief Minister Oommen Chandy will present the last budget of the government on February 12