Jose K Mani’s entry: Pinarayi keeps options open

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THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Understandably on a solid wicket, the ruling Left front is not very excited about bringing in the Jose K Mani faction to the Left and has adopted a wait–and-watch policy. However once the Left considers taking in the faction, that could, in all probability, lead to another tussle between Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and the CPI.If the Jose faction approaches the Left seeking political asylum, it would probably be accommodated but none expect it to be smooth. Even if CPM welcomes Jose, it will have to convince other Left allies, especially CPI, which is against such a move. Noticeably, Pinarayi has asked the Jose faction to make its stand clear, thereby keeping the doors open. He went on to say, “In politics, there can be no permanent decisions.”

Right from the beginning of the factional feud between the P J Joseph and Jose factions, CPM has been maintaining that both sides should make their political stances clear. Though the Left front, given a choice, was keen to have the Joseph faction in LDF, it has no such enthusiasm about accommodating the Jose faction.Unless the Jose faction openly comes forward, LDF will not put forward any offers. The LDF is of the view that the action against Jose is the outcome of a political crisis within UDF. That’s why the CPM has, time and again, made it clear that the two groups ought to clarify their stances.

Recently CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan had said the KC (M) faction should clarify whether they are into political bargaining, while still with the UDF. That the Left front came to power, riding on a series of graft charges against the UDF, especially the bar bribery scam against K M Mani, is still an active memory in Kerala politics. Hence any move to bring Jose to the Left fold, would be taken only after proper consensus within the front. However, CPI is not keen to have the faction as an ally.

The Left leadership is aware of all the hurdles it has to cross before bringing in the Jose faction. That’s exactly why LDF convener A Vijayaraghavan did not sound very excited about the KC(M) feud. On Monday, he preferred to only say that it’s too early to think about Jose Mani faction’s entry into the Left fold and left it at that.

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