RSP in No Mood to Break away from UDF; Chandrachoodan Climbs Down
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: With N K Premachandran MP categorically ruling out the possibility of the state unit of the RSP leaving the UDF and indicating the readiness to face disciplinary action if need be, party national general secretary T J Chandrachoodan on Tuesday toned down his response.
A statement reportedly made by him that the central committee had called for snapping ties with the Congress in Kerala had resulted in a war of words between state leaders of the RSP and him.
The RSP here had severed ties with LDF and aligned with the Congress-led UDF on the eve of Lok Sabha polls, after Premachandran was denied the Kollam seat.
Shibu Baby John, who is a minister in the state Cabinet too was guarded in his response.
“There is no difference of opinion in the merged outfit. But the statement of RSP national general secretary T J Chandrachoodan has sent a wrong message. He needs to clarify it,” Shibu Baby John told Express.
T J Chandrachoodan denied that there is a rift in the party over the issue. “If Shibu had read my statement he could not have made such a comment,” said Chandrachoodan.
As the Congress party is going through a lean patch at the national level, RSP expects it and the Left parties to put up a joint fight against the BJP, he said. “RSP is aiming for Left unity at the national level,” Chandrachoodan said.
Shibu Baby John said though he was not part of the central committee, he was sure that the body had not taken any decision as stated by Chandrachoodan. “It would be politically immoral for the RSP to think about leaving the UDF fold after winning an LS seat as part of the Congress-led Front.”
There are many in the state unit of the RSP who believe that Chandrachoodan had overstepped his brief while presenting the decisions of the central committee.
“We don’t know the national secretary’s actual game plan. He may be feeling that his relevance in politics is getting subdued and therefore desperate to position himself in the state,” a senior leader of the party told ‘Express’.
Chandrachoodan, in what is now seen as a climbdown from an earlier stance, said that the state unit of the party had no other option but to leave the LDF. “Moreover, the CPM has aligned with the Congress in Jammu and Kashmir. The CPI have joined the Congress camp in Telengana. Then how can they object to the RSP joining the UDF fold,” he asked.
N K Premachandran said the Central Committee was apprised of the above fact. Speaking to Express over phone from New Delhi, Premachandran said there was no question of the state unit of the RSP leaving UDF. “We’ll face disciplinary action if warranted. The general secretary might be speaking about the party’s national political line. His statement on Monday has created some confusion. The Central Committee had not found fault with the state unit’s decision as stated by the general secretary. In fact, the state unit could convince the Bengal unit leaders that party had no other option but to quit LDF to survive,” he said. LDF convenor Vaikom Viswan said RSP leadership was spreading falsehood that they were forced to quit the Front over denial of seat. CPI state secretary Pannian Ravindran told Express the party would take a wait and watch approach.