Kerala Congress leaders PJ Joseph and Mons Joseph resigned as MLAs on Friday ahead of filing their nomination papers for the April 6 assembly elections in the state, party sources in Kottayam said.
The move came two days after the Kerala Congress faction led by PJ Joseph, a constituent of the Congress-led United Democratic Front, merged with the Kerala Congress headed by former Union Minister PC Thomas which had quit the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance.
While PJ Joseph represented Thodupuzha seat in Idukki the assembly, Mons was elected from Kaduthuruthy in the 2016 polls.
Sources said that both Joseph and Mons took the decision to resign as MLAs to avoid possible legal complications since they had won the previous polls as members of Kerala Congress (M), which is currently a constituent of the CPI(M)-led Left Democratic Front.
Earlier, the PJ Joseph faction had lost its election symbol "two leaves" and recognition following its split with the Jose K Mani-led Kerala Congress (M).
The UDF has allocated ten seats to the P J Joseph-headed Kerala Congress and they all filed nomination papers from their respective constituencies on Friday, sources said.
Since the Kerala Congress headed by Thomas was a registered party, the merger on March 17 has helped Joseph-led faction to retain the name Kerala Congress.
However, the Election Commission refused to grant the party a common symbol citing that the time has lapsed for moving the application for it, party sources said.
They said the party candidates in theirnomination papers have applied for three symbols and it was hopeful that the EC would allocate a common symbol.