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Kerala: NCP faction leaves LDF coalition to join UDF | India News

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KOCHI: Before the Assembly elections in Kerala, the opposition UDF was shot in the arm on Saturday by a faction in the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), a constituent in the ruling LDF, announcing their decision to secede from the CPM . led an alliance and joined the Front led by Congress.
Mani C Kappan MLA, who heads the faction, said he will attend the Yatra ‘Aiswarya Kerala’ led by Congressional Leader Ramesh Chennithala when he arrives in his Pala constituency in Kottayam district on Sunday.
Kappan, who won the Pala seat as the LDF candidate in the 2019 by-pass vote, claimed the support of seven district presidents and nine state NCP officials.
He rebelled against the state leadership of the LDF following the move reported by the CPM to hand over the Pala Assembly seat to the Kerala Congress (M), led by José K Mani, who recently joined the ruling front after breaking his decades-long alliance with the UDF.
Speaking to reporters here, Kappan expressed his hope that the UDF will take his faction into its fold.
Kerala Transport Minister AK Saseendran, who heads the rival faction of the NCP, condemned Kappan’s move to join the UDF, claiming that he committed an injustice to the people of Pala who elected him on the bypoll.
However, the national leadership of the PNC has not reacted to the development.
Welcoming Kappan to the UDF fold, Chennithala said in Idukki that Kappan’s decision to work with UDF will help boost the morale of its workers in the Assembly elections.
The opposition leader in the State Assembly said that Kappan will stand as Pala’s UDF candidate in the Assembly elections.
Stating that the LDF base was shaking day by day, he said that more and more leaders and followers will leave the ruling front and join the UDF in the coming days.
Seeking to downplay development, CPM Secretary of State A Vijayaraghavan said that “the LDF places more importance on NCP than on Kappan,” he said.
Kappan had defeated Kerala Congress Leader Jose Tom, who ran as UDF candidate in the 2019 by-vote required due to the passing of veteran Kerala Congress Leader and former Minister KM Mani.
KM Mani had represented Pala’s headquarters in the Assembly for more than 50 years.
Kappan had held talks with the national leaders of the PNC in New Delhi this week about the “injustice” that the LDF was inflicting on him on Pala’s seat.

Times of India

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