The "spare the rod and spoil the child" policy being practiced in the Congress party in Kerala is going to be a thing of the past, with the newly-named office bearers of the state unit deciding to constitute a disciplinary committee at its first meeting here on Monday.
The decision also provoked some disgruntled reactions.
Speaking to the media, state Congress president Mullapally Ramachandran said that the disciplinary committee would be in place very soon.
"From now on, irrespective of the status and position of the leaders in the party, under no circumstances would anyone be allowed to breach discipline. It will have to be strictly adhered to and strong action would be taken if the line of discipline is breached," said Ramachandran.
It was only of Friday, following numerous rounds of talks at various levels in Kerala and in Delhi, that the Congress high command released its first list of 47 office bearers of the Kerala unit of the party.
The first list includes 12 vice-presidents, 34 general secretaries and a treasurer.
Over the years, the bane of the Congress party in Kerala has been the way in which leaders at all levels have embarassed the party by their statements to the media, and have been able to get away without facing disciplinary action.
Former state party chief and current Lok Sabha member K. Muraleedharan, the son of former Chief Minister K. Karunakaran, appeared upset over the developments and criticised Ramachandran for the way the list of party office bearers had been prepared.
"Instead of attacking me, this aggression should be there against (Prime Minister) Modi and (Chief Minister) Pinarayi Vijayan also," Muraleedharan said.
Responding to the outburst, Ramachandran said he sympathised with Muraleedharan.
"I am quite happy with the new team and we did our best to limit the size of the team and to a large extent, it has been possible. We will make sure that we will make up with more representation to women, youth and to those from the weaker sections of society, when the second list of office bearers (secretaries and executive) is announced," Ramachandran said.