MV Govindan replaces Kodiyeri Balakrishnan as Kerala CPI(M) state secretary

As MV Govindan currently serves as a minister in the Kerala cabinet, he will have to step down to take up the party post.
MV Govindan Master
MV Govindan Master
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After Kodiyeri Balakrishnan stepped down as the state secretary of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) in Kerala due to major health issues, state Excise Minister MV Govindan, who is the Taliparamba MLA, took charge of the post on Sunday, August 28. “As Kodiyeri Balakrishnan is not able to continue as CPI(M) state secretary, MV Govindan was elected to the post by the state committee meeting held on Sunday,” a press note from the CPI(M) state secretariat said. Party General Secretary Sitaram Yechury, politburo members Prakash Karat, Pinarayi Vijayan, MA Baby and A Vijayaraghavan attended the state committee meeting, which was presided over by EP Jayarajan.

It was earlier informed that Yechury and Karat would preside over the party emergency meeting, which was scheduled for two consecutive days, Sunday and Monday. Yechury, Karat, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and a few other CPI(M) leaders had visited Kodiyeri at his home on Sunday morning before the party took the decision. There were reports that Kodiyeri had informed his willingness to resign from the position earlier itself.

As Govindan currently serves as a minister in the cabinet, he will have to step down to take up the party post. However, neither the party nor the government have yet been informed about such a decision yet. The portfolio of Culture, Fisheries and Film is also lying vacant, after Minister Saji Cheriyan resigned in July following a controversy over his comments on the Indian Constitution. Both vacant positions are expected to be filled in soon.

Kodiyeri Balakrishnan has been unwell and undergoing treatment for cancer for a while. In March this year, he was reelected the party state secretary for the third time in a row, at the party’s state conference held in Kochi. In the midst of his previous term as state secretary, he had stepped down in November 2020, citing ill health. The move came days after his son Bineesh Kodiyeri was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate in a drug peddling case. LDF convener A Vijayaraghavan had replaced him in the interim.

However, a year later, Kodiyeri was reinstated to the post in December 2021. By then, Bineesh had got bail from a Bengaluru court in the narcotics case, after being imprisoned for about a year.

Kodiyeri, who is one of the senior most leaders of the CPI(M) in Kerala, hails from the party stronghold of Kannur. He was first elected as state secretary in February 2015 and was re-elected for a second time in 2018 after completing his three-year term. He was the Home Minister in the VS Achuthanandan-led LDF government, from 2006 to 2011.


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