KASARGOD: When Rajmohan Unnithan alights from Chennai Mail in Kasargod at 11 am on Monday, the storm in Kasargod would be over, and all the Congress leaders would be present at the station wearing their best smile. “He is our candidate and we all will be present at the station to receive him,” said former district Congress president C K Sreedharan.
Unnithan’s candidature caught everyone in the district by surprise and a section of leaders registered their protest and vented their anger at District Congress president Hakkim Kunnil. Congress state secretary K Neelakandan said the entire party machinery would be set rolling for the campaign.
Unnithan, 63, a native of Kollam, is a stark contradiction to his main rival and LDF candidate K P Satheesh Chandran.
Unnithan is loud and an aggressive debater during television debates. Satheesh Chandran is understated but articulate and has a strong base in Kasargod. “Satheesh Chandran is a tall candidate but Unnithan has his strength,” said Sreedharan.
The political killings, women entering Sabarimala and the BJP’s communal politics and mismanagement of the economy are major issues for this election, and Unnithan can take on the rivals effectively and convince the voters, said Hakkim Kunnil. “He will have the full backing of all party workers in the district,” he said.
Unnithan was born on January 1, 1956, in Thiruvananthapuram. He did his graduation in economics from S N College, Kollam, and dabbled in theatres. He entered politics through KSU. His moment in student politics came when he defeated MA Baby in college to become the students’ union chairman in S N College.
He was also the state general secretary of Youth Congress. He entered electoral politics in 2006 when he took on CPM’s Kodiyeri Balakrishnan in Thalassery. Balakrishnan defeated him by 10,055 votes. In 2001, the CPM leader had won by 7,043 votes.
In 2015, he was made the general secretary of Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee. He is party spokesperson and a member of AICC. In 2016, he contested against CPM leader J Mercy Kutty Amma in Kundara and lost. His performance in TV studios won with a role in Shaji Kailas’s movie Tiger, that was released in 2005. Since then, he had acted in several movies.