Thiruvananthapuram, Oct 27 (IANS) Kerala is seeing a lot of political activity as various parties are trying to find and fix their place in the coalition politics of the state. The activity has intensified as the term of the present Assembly ends in May and elections are due.
A turn of events is being witnessed in state politics as the curious tale of two PC’s are trying their best to see their calculations do not go wrong. Both seasoned veteran politicians — P.C. Thomas and P.C. George — are doing their best to enter the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF).
Both the PC’s have a few striking similarities, Thomas, who is turning 70 later this month is a six time MP from the Muvattupuzha Lok Sabha seat (which now longer exists after delimitation) from 1989 to 2009.
Thomas, father of P.T.Chacko, (was a seasoned Kerala politician and the founding member of the Kerala Congress party), was once the blue eyed boy of the Kerala Congress (M) veteran late K.M. Mani, who fielded him five times from Muvattupuzha. However, the relation between the two soured, ever since Mani began promoting his own son Jose K. Mani.
Thomas after parting ways with Mani in 2003 became a Union Minister of State for Law in the then A.B. Vajpayee government and a year later he, standing as an NDA candidate, defeated the Left candidate and also Jose K. Mani, who was the Congress-led UDF candidate from the Muvattupuzha Lok Sabha seat.
After 2009, following delimitation the Muvattupuzha seat went into oblivion, so did Thomas from the electoral politics and his party Kerala Congress (Thomas) was an ally of the BJP-led NDA. After finding that the BJP was ignoring him, he has decided to say goodbye.
“We have already verbally informed the BJP that we feel sad that as a party, we were unable to do anything for the people and hence we will be leaving,” said Thomas and expressed hope that he might get the nod from the UDF.
It was after Jose K. Mani decided to take his faction out of the UDF and join the Left, that Thomas decided to make his move. But after finding strong opposition to joining the Kerala Congress (Joseph), he has decided to explore the possibility of being accommodated as an ally of the UDF and for that talks have begun.
With the Assembly elections expected in May 2021, the Congress leadership is non-committal about giving him any assurance of a seat for him to contest and according to top Congress sources, Thomas is likely to be given one seat for himself to contest in Kottayam district.
Sixty-nine-year-old George is another veteran who is now a sitting legislator and that too for the seventh time from Poonjar in Kottayam district. During his long political career, he has seen his loyalties shift from K.M. Mani to P.J. Joseph and, finally, decided to form his own party. In the 2016 Assembly polls, neither the Left nor the UDF accommodated him, but he defeated all of them from his home bastion.
In between, like Thomas, he took his small party (Kerala Congress-Secular) to the NDA, but after a while he decided to come out of the NDA and is now knocking hard at the UDF doors.
“Yes, talks are going on as a few things have to be sorted out. We are all hopeful that everything will turn out to be mutually beneficial. Let us wait and see,” said George.
With the entry of Jose K. Mani, the Left has now 11 parties. The Congress-led UDF has six full fledged parties and three friendly parties, who still have not been given seats to contest in the Assembly elections.
With the local bodies poll most likely to be held in December, the coming weeks are expected to see hectic political parleys to iron out differences before welcoming new allies by both the UDF and the LDF.