KOCHI: Though the UDF has secured simple majority in the Kochi Corporation, tough days are ahead for the Congress district leadership as group equations will be a deciding factor in finalising the Mayor candidate.
Out of the 38 seats won by the UDF, the Congress has 35, the IUML 2 and the Kerala Congress (M) one. So, the Mayor will be from the Congress. The ‘I’ faction has projected Gracy Babu Jacob as its Mayor probable, while the ‘A’ faction is projecting Soumini Jain. A surprise entry in the list of Mayor probables is Shyny Mathew.
Soumini Jain, who is former Works Standing Committee chairperson, registered her second victory from the Elamkulam division of the Corporation by defeating N Nirmala by a margin of 94 votes. Gracy Babu Jacob defeated LDF-Independent Feneesha Philomina Roy in the Ernakulam North division, the youngest candidate, by a margin 519 votes.
Meanwhile, the candidature of Shyny Mathew, who beat Independent candidate Rose Mary Wilson and Congress rebel Deepthi Mary Kureethara, has triggered a controversy within the party.According to group mangers of the Congress, deliberations have already begun to finalise the new Mayor of the Corporation. “If a consensus is not reached in the negotiations, the Mayor candidate would only be finalised after a division in the parliamentary party,” they added.