Published: Mon, November 13, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

Pinarayi to decide on seeking Thomas Chandy's resignation

Pinarayi to decide on seeking Thomas Chandy's resignation

The veteran leader questioned the "credibility" of media reports suggesting that the Advocate General has given legal advice backing the report submitted by the Alappuzha Collector, alleging encroachment by the resort in which Chandy has a stake.

Achuthanandan, who heads the Kerala Administrative Reforms Commission, expressed his anger against Chandy a day after the ruling LDF entrusted chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan with taking a decision on the demand for the minister's resignation.

Challenging the report, Chandy moved the Kerala High Court saying the collector conducted an unfair inquiry into the "wild and baseless" allegations against his Water World Tourism Company.

Chandy had also allegedly encroached on the backwaters in order to construct a parking space for the resort, according to the collector's report.

Besides, the NCP has also not discussed the matter as there was no need to discuss a "non-issue", he told reporters.

Party sources said NCP is to take a decision on the resignation of their party nominee, following the allegation against him, in their party meeting scheduled to be held on Tuesday next. The findings of the district collectors report cannot be ignored, the sources said.

This will be crucial for Thomas Chandy because if the high court makes any negative remarks against the minister, that would well be the last nail in the coffin. Senior Congress leader V M Sudheeran said that, "Vivek should not appear for a corrupt minister". Shortly before the meeting, state NCP leaders, including T P Peethambaran Master, A K Saseendran and Chandy, met here reportedly to discuss the stand to be taken at the LDF meet.

"Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan should explain why he is protecting Chandy even though all legal advices connected with the issue are against the minister", he said. "Only the high court can prove this. The sooner the Chief Minister acts, the better", said a Kochi-based former CPI (M) theorist. Pinarayi can not take refuge in his usual excuses - that let the court give its decision or let the final legal opinion come. The opposition - the Congress-led UDF and the BJP - have been demanding Chandy's resignation over the controversy.

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