THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Congress camp upbeat on Monday following the LDF‘s decision to put an end to the Brennan College slugfest between Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and Congress state president K Sudhakaran. Having kicked off the verbal duel, the party feels Sudhakaran is having the last laugh as his intention was to ruffle a tough taskmaster like Pinarayi Vijayan.While damage has been done to both the Congress and the CPM, senior leaders feel that the latter has been affected the most which is why the LDF decided to put an end to the controversy.
At the same time, the decision by the DYFI and the family members of Nalpadi Vasu to proceed legally against Sudhakaran following his revelation during the press meet that his gunman had shot Vasu at Mattannur in 1993 has left him unperturbed. He reacted the same way to the row over the 1992 Savoury Hotel bomb case.
“Let them file cases against me, I will deal with it. It was Pinarayi who kicked off the slugfest and they have ended it now. I had maintained high political decorum by using only refined language. During my press meet, I might have reacted emotionally, but that is quite natural,” Sudhakaran told TNIE.The spat began after Sudhakaran claimed in an interview to a vernacular weekly that he had knocked down Pinarayi during a campus clash while at Brennan College during the 1960s. Pinarayi countered it the next day, speaking for nearly 40 minutes, saying he had emerged victorious in the brawl.
Following Sudhakaran’s press meet at the party office in Ernakulam on Saturday, a majority of the senior Congress leaders had rallied behind him. Reluctantly, they realised that Sudhakaran had managed to bring out Pinarayi’s ‘street-goonda style’ reply to the forefront. Though Sudhakaran’s style of functioning has been on expected lines, at least a section of the senior leaders belonging to both the parties were caught unawares when Pinarayi jumped at the bait.
Opposition Leader V D Satheesan had said on the first day that Pinarayi’s ploy was to distract media attention from the Muttil tree felling issue.“An incident which happened 57 years ago during the two leaders’ college lives is a non-issue now. This is happening at a time when there are lots of prime issues hogging the limelight. There is no outcome from what had transpired between Pinarayi and Sudhakaran during their Brennan College days as it doesn’t mean anything to the people,” Satheesan said.