Congress, IUML patch up differences in Kerala

July 1st, 2008 - 12:19 am ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Sonia Gandhi

Malappuram (Kerala), June 30 (IANS) The discord between Congress and its United Democratic Front (UDF) ally Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) was reportedly settled at a meeting between the top state leaders of the two parties here Monday evening. The relationship between the two allies hit a low after senior Congress leader from Malappuram district Aryadan Mohammed and his son Aryadan Shoukat came out with statements against IUML and its supremo Panakkad Syed Muhammedali Shihab Thangal.

Shoukat, a Congress leader and the president of Nilambur village council in the district, had also demanded an inquiry to ascertain how the Thangal family came to acquire its wealth. Thangal is a revered leader in the state.

Detailing the decisions taken at Monday’s meeting to reporters, Congress state president Ramesh Chennithala said that since the statements affected the smooth functioning of opposition UDF alliance, the party “has instructed Aryadan Muhammed not to issue such statements again”.

Chennithala also publicly warned Shoukath for his statements against Thangal.

The IUML leaders said they were satisfied with the outcome of the meeting. Following the discussions, the Thangal also exhorted his party workers to strengthen the UDF.

Last month, the Congress leadership had issued a show cause notice to Shoukath for his statement against Thangal, but this did not satisfy the IUML.

This issue also saw Chennithala and leader of opposition Oommen Chandy rushing to Delhi for discussions with Sonia Gandhi, who advised them to settle the issue in the state at the earliest.

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