The Congress demands Ministers’ resignations on every issue – that is not possible, Kodiyeri said.

No differences between CPI and CPI M over Munnar Mani wont be sacked Kodiyeri BalakrishnanKodiyeri Balakrishnan
news Politics Friday, April 28, 2017 - 13:37

CPI (M) state Secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan has dismissed speculation of a rift between LDF coalition partners CPI and CPI (M) over the issue of the anti-encroachment drive in Munnar.

Speaking at a news conference, Kodiyeri said that there are no major differences between the CPI and the CPI (M) over the issue.

“The CPI (M) is ready to discuss the issues raised by the CPI, and is very particular that such differences of opinion don’t affect the coalition – Left Democratic Front,” he said.

“The difference was only regarding the demolition of the metal cross at Pappathichola,” he added.

Kodiyeri also urged the government to bring in a comprehensive legislation regarding the construction of buildings in Munnar. The law should mandate that constructions should be environment friendly. At the same time demolitions should not affect the tourism potential of Munnar, he said.

In March this year the Revenue Department, under instructions from Devikulam Sub-Collector V Sriram, began an anti-encroachment drive in Munnar. The bureaucrat had then invited severe criticism from CPI (M) members in Munnar, when the former razed down an allegedly illegally constructed shed by the CPI (M).

The tension brewing between the CPI (M) and the bureaucrat erupted to the surface when a massive Christian cross erected on encroached land in Pappathichola was taken down last week. 

Read: A massive cross was demolished in Kerala, but Christian groups didn’t protest. Here’s why

Kodiyeri urged the officials carrying out the evictions to properly distinguish between encroachers and those holding proper title deeds.

“Encroachments should be removed. But at the same time, those people having title deeds with them should not be asked to vacate. They should be protected,” Kodiyeri said.  

He also sought to urge the CPI to bring CPI (M) into consultations on how to proceed on the issue. “CPI (M) views Munnar not as an issue of the Revenue Department, but as a general issue that should be sorted by reaching a consensus and not by blaming each other,” he said.  

On the controversy raging over Minister MM Mani, Kodiyeri said that Mani will not be removed from his cabinet post.

“The party does not think that Mani should be removed from the post of Minister. Mani has clarified that he did not insult women, and there was nothing in his speech against women,” he said.  

When mediapersons asked Kodiyeri why the party issued a public warning to Mani if there was nothing offensive in his speech, Kodiyeri said, “Disciplinary action is a part of party education. Even great leaders like EMS and EK Nayanar were subjected to disciplinary action. Disciplinary action is common in the party, to ensure that offences do not occur in the future.”

“The Congress is demanding resignation of Ministers in each and every issue. That is not possible,” he added. 

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