Post civic polls CPI-M hopeful of retaining power, Cong equally confident

Thiruvananthapuram, Dec 18 : Two days after the ruling CPI-M scored a victory by being the front runner in the civic polls, the party at a meeting on Friday appeared to be confident of retaining power in the next assembly polls.

On the other hand, the Congress after its meeting said it would return to power, despite a not too enthusiastic performance in the elections.

Though the civic poll results came as a shock for the Congress, its state party president Mullapally Ramachandran said the correct terminology is we did not get what we expected to get.

"Overall we did manage to get more seats than the 2015 civic polls, this was not the result that any of us expected.

It's a bit puzzling to note that a few real issues was not discussed in the civic polls. Our political affairs committee met till late last night and all of us were equally confident things will be different in the assembly polls (April/May)," said Ramachandran to the media here.

"Various meetings of our leaders at all levels will be held on different days in January.

There is one very crucial meeting which will see all our leaders take part over two days starting on January 6.

I agree there were lapses and it's to rectify that we all are going to have an introspection," added Ramachandran.

But on Saturday it was a jubilant CPI-M which according to many analysts is yet to come to terms with the victory, which they managed despite the ruling Pinarayi Vijayan government coming under a cloud over various scams and allegations.

Even its state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan had to step down after his younger son was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate on October 29 for financial dealings with his friend who has now been arrested by the Narcotics Control Bureau.

At the CPI-M state secretariat meeting held here on Friday, it was all round bonhomie among the top brass.

After seeing the results, they have started to think that they will become the first ever government in Kerala to retain power.

Soon after the gold smuggling case surfaced on July 5 and the arrest by the ED of Vijayan's secretary and senior IAS officer M.

Sivasankar, their earlier hopes of retaining power in next year's assembly polls seemed to be dashed.

But now that despair has vanished with the civic poll results where they managed to retain their tally of seats, which saw only a minor slide from the number in 2015.

The meeting took stock and felt that one reason why they were able to cling on to power was the work they did by ensuring supply of free food kits to all when the Covid pandemic struck, besides giving social pensions to all the needy on time and clearing the arrears.

It has also been decided that Vijayan will undertake a statewide trip to meet the people.

He is expected to cover all the 14 districts, one by one, but not in one go.

For the BJP, things do not appear that bright as their tall claims of securing more than 3000 seats, up from the 1200 seats they held in the 2015 civic polls, fell flat and they were able to reach only 1600 seats.

Polls was held to 21,865 seats in the three-tier local body structure.



Source: IANS