Kerala’s LDF finalises seat sharing plan, JD-S walks out (Lead)

March 19th, 2009 - 9:39 pm ICT by IANS  

Thiruvananthapuram, March 19 (IANS) Kerala’s ruling Left Democratic Front (LDF) Thursday finalised a seat sharing plan while a miffed ally Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) walked out of the meeting on being denied the Kozhikode seat.
LDF convener Vaikom Viswam told reporters that the Kozhikode seat has been taken over by the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M).

“The JD-S did leave this meeting after being told that their sitting seat (Kozhikode) has been taken over by the CPI-M. Mohammed Riaz of the CPI-M will be the (LDF) candidate there. The newly set up Wayanad seat has been given to the CPI (Communist Party of India),” said Viswam.

The CPI-M will contest 14 seats, CPI four, the Kerala Congress (Joseph) one and the Ponanni seat would be contested by an Independent, Hussain Randathany, supported by the LDF.

In the 2004 polls, the LDF had won all but one of the 20 seats in the state.

“We hope that the JD-S will not do anything that would create confusion in the LDF and we expect them to be with the front,” said Viswam.

The seat sharing plan had reached a stalemate after the CPI-M decided to put up Randathany at Ponanni which was the seat the CPI had been contesting for long.

But the CPI-M placated the CPI and gave it the Wayanad seat after the JD-S refused to take it.

Earlier in the day, the JD-S walked out of the LDF meeting called to decide the seat sharing plan.

“As the meeting began, CPI-M state secretary Pinarayi Vijayan read out a statement that the party will take the Kozhikode seat, to which we raised our strong objection. All the other allies were silent and we felt that there was no point in sitting in the meeting. Our future decision would now be taken when our party meets on March 22,” said JD-S general secretary Varghese George.

On Monday, lone JD-S minister Mathew T. Thomas resigned from the state cabinet over the seat sharing deadlock. The JD-S has been contesting the Kozhikode seat since 1980.

According to party sources, the JD-S is all set to quit the LDF, of which it has been constituent since 1980.

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