THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A ceasefire was clamped at the instance of top party leaders on the resurgent factional fight in the Congress state unit, thereby giving a breather to the Oommen Chandy Government which crossed its fourth year in office on Monday.
The Congress leadership was forced to close ranks, ahead of the UDF liaison committee meet, which was convened urgently on the basis of a demand put up by the IUML high-power committee. The Congress leaders also told the UDF meet that there is no need for changing the schedule of the three zonal jathas and all should work towards its successful conduct.
A truce was reached after Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, KPCC president V M Sudheeran and Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala had a tripartite meeting here on Monday afternoon, while the IUML leadership and other coalition partners began to voice concern that even the survival of the government was at stake.
Following this, a ban was imposed on Congress leaders from going public on controversial topics. Hectic parleys at various levels preceded the meeting of top Congress leaders, leading to an assessment that precipitating issues would jeopardise the interests of the Congress itself.
After the talks, Sudheeran said that there are no big issues in the Congress and everything is settled now. “The party would move unitedly’’,he said. Antony came up with a belated clarification on Monday that he had made only a general statement on corruption and not much has to be read into it.
‘’I haven’t named any individual or a particular government department. What I’ve said are only general in nature, which everybody knows. I haven’t targeted anyone. Not much interpretation is needed on my statement,’’ he said.
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy asserted after the meeting with Sudheeran and Ramesh that his government is not under the shadow of any corruption, dismissing the charge of KPCC vice-chief V D Satheesan.
‘’There are no issues in the Congress as reported by the media,’’ Chandy claimed.
Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala, who leads the ‘I’ faction, said that the remaining issues, if any, would be resolved and all in the Congress would work unitedly. The IUML top leadership had put pressure to convene the UDF liaison committee on Monday itself to take stock of the developments resulting from the war of words between some Congress leaders on factional lines and to discuss the issue of holding UDF zonal jathas from Tuesday in this background.
The IUML move jolted the Congress camp, especially after JD(U) is still on a belligerent mood and the KC(M) is also maintaining a deep grouse on the delayed outcome of the bar bribe scam probe by VACB, a portfolio under Ramesh.
UDF jathas as per schedule
T’Puram: An emergency meeting of the UDF liaison committee held here on Monday has decided to organise the zonal jathas slated to commence on Tuesday, as per schedule, convenor P P Thankachan said. The central zone jatha will roll out next week, on a postponed schedule as decided earlier.