The CPM state secretariat has picked up former Gujarat-cadre IAS officer Christy Fernandez, who had been the secretary to former president Prathibha Patil, as the party candidate in Ernakulam constituency. A formal announcement will be made only after the CPM state committee ratifies the list of party candidates.
Fernandez will take on sitting MP and minister K V Thomas.
Both belong to the Latin Catholic community, which has a considerable presence in Ernakulam constituency.
Although a formal announcement is yet to come, Fernandez Thursday met Cardinal George Alanchery in Kochi (Ernakulam). After meeting the Cardinal, he told the media, “The Left has better prospect in Ernakulam. The anti-incumbency factors against the Congress governments in the state and the Centre are enough to bring the LDF success, irrespective of who the candidate is.’
He said his meeting had little to do with the candidature. “It was a routine visit,’’ he said.
While Cardinal Alanchery is the head of Kerala-based Syro-Malabar Roman Catholic Church, which is also a prominent vote bank in the constituency, Fernandez belongs to Clappana in Kollam district. His Latin Catholic community comprises predominantly fishermen in Kerala.