Blurb: Kerala Congress (M) working chairperson PJ Joseph announced his decision before UDF published the final candidate list.

Will support UDF not Jose Mani PJ Joseph after withdrawing demand to contest polls
news Lok Sabha 2019 Sunday, March 17, 2019 - 16:20

Just hours before the UDF finalised its candidate list, Kerala Congress (M) working chairman PJ Joseph withdrew his demand to contest the Lok Sabha polls from Kottayam constituency. The Thodupuzha MLA, who was irked by the candidature of Thomas Chazhikkadan in the constituency, announced this before UDF published the final candidate list on Saturday night.

Joseph also said that he will not cause a split in the party over the issue, reported Times of India. “But I will continue my protest over such injustices within the party,” he added while addressing the media in Thodupuzha in Idukki district.

Though Joseph said he will not create a divide in the party, he once again expressed displeasure over the issue, bring to fore the tension within the party. “Though I had made my point clear that I was ready to contest from Kottayam, Idukki or Chalakkudy, Jose K Mani turned down my suggestion,” Joseph said.

Joseph's demand was turned down citing reasons that candidate outside the constituency will not be considered. But he claimed that Kerala Congress (M) employed regionalism as an excuse to keep him out of the political fray.

According to reports, Joseph also explicitly expressed his discomfort over working with Jose K Mani, the vice chairman of Kerala Congress (M). “I will support UDF and its candidates but I cannot work with Jose Mani,” he said.

Meanwhile, Jose Mani, on Saturday, said that the party has not done any injustice to Joseph, reports Asianet News. “Many names had come up for candidature. PJ Joseph had also expressed his interest in contesting the parliamentary party meeting. But there was no unanimous voice in the party for him to contest,” said Jose Mani.