March 8, 2021 9:02:16 pm
In an unusual development, hundreds of CPI (M) workers and sympathisers, including women, took to streets in protest against the candidates fixed by the party for the upcoming assembly elections.
In Ponnani in Malappuram district, scores of men and women raised slogans demanding that local CPI (M) leader T M Siddique be made the party candidate. CPI (M) has finalised CITU all India secretary P Nanda Kumar as the party candidate in the seat, currently represented by Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan. The incumbent legislator is not contesting the polls, as he had completed two consecutive terms as a legislator, a norm introduced by CPI (M) in this election.
Women held banners which said “party would correct the leaders, people would correct the party.” Siddique is a prominent local leader in Ponnani, where the CPI (M) has a strong base among the Muslim community. After reports appeared that Siddique had not figured in the list of probable candidates, the local community protested.
CPI (M) Malappuram district secretary E N Mohandas said, “When the party announces the candidate, this protest would fizzle out. Today’s march should be seen only as an emotional reaction of people. I don’t think party cadres would be involved,” he said.
At Kuttiyadi in Kozhikode district, party cadres protested against handing over the seat to Kerala Congress (M), a new entrant in the LDF. Kuttiyadi is a CPI (M) stronghold and the party has been contesting all elections. Local cadres and leaders wanted former Kozhikode district panchayat president K P Kunhahammed Master as the candidate. But, the CPI (M) state leadership wanted to seat to be handed over to KC (M).
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