While CPM defends its minister, CPI maintains a studied silence

While the Opposition UDF has been mounting pressure on the government for K K Shylaja’s resignation, a determined CPM has taken a firm stand in defending the Health Minister. Curiously, the CPI has been maintaining a studied silence in the matter

Published: 23rd August 2017 01:03 AM  |   Last Updated: 23rd August 2017 08:40 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: While the Opposition UDF has been mounting pressure on the government for K K Shylaja’s resignation, a determined CPM has taken a firm stand in defending the Health Minister. Curiously, the CPI has been maintaining a studied silence in the matter. The LDF meet on Friday is expected to look into ongoing political developments, including allegations against two ministers - Shylaja and Transport Minister Thomas Chandy. Sensing an opportunity, the UDF has strengthened agitations within and outside the Assembly. The opposition alleged double standards in dealing with allegations against E P Jayarajan, who had to quit following nepotism charges last November, and Shylaja.  

However, the CPM has rejected the Opposition demands. Right from the beginning, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has maintained there is no reason for the minister to quit as the appointments were carried out fulfilling all the necessary procedures.Speaking to Express, LDF convener Vaikom Viswan rejected the Opposition charges of nepotism against Shylaja.“There’s no illegal intervention by the minister. Just because one of those appointed has a Left background, nepotism charges cannot be raised. The Opposition is just trying to find an opportunity,” Viswan said. 

The minister need not resign on the basis of court remarks alone, said another Left leader. “The scenario in which E P Jayarajan quit and the current situation are different. Opposition has been raising charges just for the sake of doing so. The Left has always taken the stance that, if there are lapses, they will be corrected,” he said.
CPI remains silent
The CPI, clearly unhappy over the developments, has been maintaining a studied silence. Thought the party has not taken any public stance on the issue so far, a section of its leaders feel this controversy could have been avoided. Meanwhile, sources said a CPI leader was also among the candidates. 
“The minister has a direct involvement as she was heading the interview board. Also, these are not mere remarks by the court. It’s part of the verdict. In fact, going to the Division Bench or going for a detailed argument could make things worse,” sources said. 

So far, no discussion was held in the LDF regarding the allegations. “It’s a development in a portfolio held by another party. Hence, the CPI would not like to make any comment. The party has been observing the developments before the court,” said another leader. Already, there are differences of opinion between the CPM and the CPI over allegations against Thomas Chandy and P V Anwar MLA. When the Chief Minister defended both, Revenue Minister E Chandrasekharan made it clear that action will be initiated if allegations are proven right. 

Medical admission case is more important: HC

Kochi: The Kerala High Court on Tuesday orally observed the case regarding medical admission was more important than the state government’s petition seeking to expunge the adverse remarks against minister K K Shylaja. A Division Bench of the High Court made the observation when the Advocate General (AG) specially mentioned the case at 10.15 am. The AG submitted the Single Judge made the remarks without hearing Shylaja.

The court asked why the state didn’t approach the Single Judge again seeking a review on the judgment. Following this, the court took up the case regarding the medical seat allotment. The Single Judge had made the remarks against Shylaja while quashing the appointments of two persons appointed as members of the State Child Rights Commission. The petition said the remarks and observations were made without making Shylaja a respondent in the case. Those remarks were not necessary for proper disposal of the case.

Hence, the appeal was filed before the Division Bench, the plea said. The Single Judge had issued the order on a petition by Jasmine Alex, Vallichira, Kottayam, challenging the selection process. The court had observed files did not disclose the reasons for extending the deadline for submission of application by the minister. When the minister issued a specific directive, the files should disclose the reason for the decision. If the files do not reveal the reason, the court will presume the decision in such cases are not bona fide.


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