THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The stalemate in the UDF over the Assembly Deputy Speaker’s post is unlikely to be resolved anytime soon with the claimants reluctant to put their foot down even as Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and other UDF leaders are keen on arriving at a consensus.
As a master of delaying tactics, Chandy will only buy time, and the mantle may eventually go to the RSP.
A A Azeez MLA told ‘Express’ that, “We’ve put forth a demand and expect that the post will be allotted to the RSP. We also expect that a consensus will be reached soon.” He said the party was well aware of the fact that it has joined the UDF only a year ago. Kovoor Kunjumon MLA is the nominee of the RSP for the post.
“It’s true that no constitutional crisis will entail if the Deputy Speaker’s post is not filled. Especially when there is only eight months left for the tenure of the present government to end”, he pointed out. “We’ll not create any schism in the UDF. We’re expecting that the party demand will be met.”.
Along with Labour Minister Shibu Baby John and N K Premachandran MP, the party secretary had met the Chief Minister a couple of days ago. “He didn’t say that there was any hitch in allotting the post to RSP, but only maintained that a decision has not been taken yet”, said Azeez. RSP national general secretary T J Chandrachoodan also struck an optimistic note that the post will be allotted to the party. “RSP is indeed eligible for the post. The party considers deputy speakership as important”,he said.At the same time, though K Muraleedharan MLA has made it clear that he will not be running for the post, the ‘I’ faction is not willing to let go and has begun scouring for another nominee.
Since the ‘A’ faction had projected Palode Ravi MLA,the ‘I’ faction does not want to loose its edge.Meanwhile, the RSP is also keen to have its pound of flesh in Assembly seats by contesting in the forthcoming elections . “Isn’t it only just and natural that the RSP should be allotted a seat in T’Puram district?”, Azeez asked, referring to the fact that RSP has been contesting Aryanad-turned-Aruvikkara seat for long.”