KOZHIKODE: Industrialist-turned-politician V K C Mammed Koya of the CPM and veteran politician M C Mayin Haji of the IUML would have never thought of contesting an election against writer Punathil Kunjabdulla. But Punathil gave them a surprise in 2001 when he decided to contest the Assembly polls from Beypore constituency but the real shocker came when he opted for the BJP ticket.
Not only the other political parties but also the literary circle in the state were taken aback by Punathil’s decision to fight the election on BJP ticket. Both Mammed Koya and Mayin Haji have vivid memories of their political encounter with the writer who gave the duo a tight fight by securing 10, 934 votes and finishing third.
“I first met the writer during the election campaign. He was a strong contestant and fought the election as a seasoned politician. I was astonished at the way he campaigned throughout the election,” said Mammed Koya. “He always greeted us with respect. Never went out of the limits while targetting us as his political opponent during the campaign,” he added.
M C Mayin Haji said: “though I have differences of opinion with his way of life, he was a great writer. His demise has left a void.”