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Shocker for Left: LDF voted out in Kannur Corporation

Though the outcome of the no-confidence motion moved by the UDF against Mayor EP Latha was predictable, the run-up to the procedures in the council had all the elements of a high drama. 

Published: 18th August 2019 05:25 AM  |   Last Updated: 18th August 2019 05:25 AM   |  A+A-

UDF supporters carry deputy mayor P K Ragesh on their shoulders after the success of no-confidence motion against Mayor E P Latha | Express

By Express News Service

KANNUR: Though the outcome of the no-confidence motion moved by the UDF against Mayor EP Latha was predictable, the run-up to the procedures in the council had all the elements of a high drama. 

The councillors were given police protection as requested by the UDF. The entire corporation office and the surroundings were put under tight security. And to top it all, the media was not allowed to cover the proceedings. 

Predictably, the no-confidence motion moved by the UDF against Mayor EP Latha was passed with a majority of two votes after four hours of discussion. The proceedings began at 9 am. The UDF got 28 votes and LDF 26.

Even before the motion was taken for discussion and later for voting, everybody knew the outcome as the UDF had secured the vital support of deputy mayor PK Ragesh, on whose backing the LDF was able to form the council four years ago. 

The LDF was also one man short as one seat had become vacant owing to the death of its councillor T M Kuttikrishnan, who represented Edakkad, a few months ago.

When the Kannur Corporation elections were held four years ago, both UDF and LDF got 27 councillors each in the 55-member council. One seat was won by Congress rebel PK Ragesh, who had contested as an independent. Earlier, Ragesh had parted ways with the Congress.  

During the mayor election, Ragesh had supported LDF. But, during the election of deputy mayor, he abstained from voting resulting in the victory of Muslim League’s C Sameer. Since he took an independent stand, UDF approached Ragesh to support it during the election of standing committee chairpersons. With his support, UDF was able to win all the standing committee chairperson posts except one. 

But, after the first six months, LDF moved a no-confidence motion against deputy mayor C Sameer. Realising that Ragesh would support LDF, Sameer resigned from the post on the day the no-confidence motion was about to be discussed.  Soon, Ragesh became the deputy mayor with the support of LDF.

Later some friction developed between the mayor and deputy mayor over various issues. During the recent Lok Sabha election, UDF candidate K Sudhakaran met Ragesh and they settled their old rivalry for good. Then Ragesh offered his support to the UDF and expressed his willingness to switch sides. 

The date of election of the new mayor will be announced by the State Election Commission soon. It is expected that the election will be conducted within two weeks. The Kerala Union of Working Journalists district unit protested against the Collector’s move to deny the right to cover the discussion and voting.



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