People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 26

June 26, 2011




Congress Leadership Comes under Heavy Firing


N S Sajith


ON June 9, executive meeting of the Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) ended in a protest note as most of the senior leaders launched a frontal attack on the state leadership of the party for the pathetic performance of United Democratic Front (UDF) in the recently concluded state assembly elections. Prominent leaders like V M Sudheeran and V D Satheeshan came down heavily on the KPCC president Ramesh Chennithala and chief minister Oomen Chandy for having protected the tainted leaders like P K Kunhalikkutty of the Indian Union Muslim League and R Balakrishnapillai of the Kerala Congress. Most of the leaders equated the narrow victory of the UDF with a defeat.


The meeting decided to form a three member committee, under the leadership of former speaker Vakkom Puroshothaman, to enquire into the reasons for the UDF’s setback in the elections.


While a thorough introspection was done by the second rung leaders in the meeting and they were keen to attack the leaders, Oommen Chandy and Ramesh Chennithala maintained silence from the beginning to the end. Both leaders were held responsible for the bungling in seat allotments and the allotment of ministerial berths.


V M Sudheeran and V D Satheesan said that the Congress leaders’ enthusiasm to protect P K Kunhalikkutty who was held up in the sex scandal and to R Balakrishna Pillai who was jailed in a corruption case, damaged the prospect of the Congress party as well as of the Congress led UDF. When the Congress started to put them in high positions, common members left the party. The League had had a prestigious victory in Malappuram at the cost of the Congress. If the union defence minister A K Antony had not turned up for the front, the defeat should have been more dismal, the critic duo said.


The critics pointed out that the probity of the Congress eroded when the leaders declared that they would provide legal support to Balakrishna Pillai. These leaders dragged the party to the stables of caste and communal organisations, Sudheeran and Satheesan said.


Satheesan also criticised Ramesh Chennithala for his decision to contest as it caused confusion among the rank and file. Senior Congress leader and former Lok Sabha member A C Jose also criticised the Congress leadership for conceding to the pressure of the Muslim League.