Tharoor ‘in contention’ for Congress ticket from Kerala

March 6th, 2009 - 6:19 pm ICT by IANS  

Thiruvananthapuram, March 6 (IANS) State Congress president Ramesh Chennithala Friday said former UN under-secretary general Shashi Tharoor’s name could figure during the discussions to shortlist candidates from Kerala for the coming Lok Sabha polls.
“He has expressed his willingness to contest and now this will be discussed by the nine-member sub committee of our party led by party general secretary Mohsina Kidwai,” Chennithala told reporters here.

He also hinted that the final list may contain some “non-political personalities”.

When asked how the Congress can consider Tharoor when he was highly critical of the party in one of his books, Chennithala shot back: “These things do not matter because then he had nothing to do with the Congress party.”

On Thursday, former chief minister Oommen Chandy and Chennithala met Congress legislators and other senior party leaders on a one-to-one basis.

“The results of the meetings would be communicated to the sub committee which will then prepare the list and forward it to the central screening committee. We expect that by the 15th of this month (March) we will announce the list of candidates,” said Chennithala.

Meanwhile, Tharoor’s posters have surfaced in his home town Palakkad but it remains to be seen how the rank and file of the Congress party would take his candidature.

“In the interest of the party workers, it would be best if people like Tharoor are given a Rajya Sabha ticket, instead of a Lok Sabha seat. All these years, we have sweated for the party and he had a good life abroad, and now we have to sweat for people like him too,” said an angry Congress leader who did not wish to be identified.

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