Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has intervened to resolve the differences within the state unit of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP). He held discussions with the leaders of the rival factions on Monday, but there has been no sign of patch-up so far.
The chief minister met NCP bigwigs Transport Minister A K Saseendran and Mani C Kappan, MLA, separately and directed them to have a one-on-one chat to find an amicable solution over the vexed Pala seat. The latter is refusing to part with the constituency he had won in a bypoll, but the former is against insisting on it during the sharing of assembly constituencies by the Left Democratic Front ahead of the state polls this summer.
On Monday the chief minister had directed Saseendran and Kappan to come to his room immediately after the assembly session. The two leaders arrived late which reportedly upset the chief minister following which a detailed discussion could not take place.
Kappan while reacting to queries from mediapersons hinted that chief minister had not given a categorical assurance on his Pala seat so far. He may quit the LDF fold if the Pala constituency is allotted to the Kerala Congress (Mani) faction led by Jose K Mani.
During a 15-minute chat with Kappan at the MLA Hostel, Saseendran reportedly told him that joining the opposition Congress-led United Democratic Front at this stage would be suicidal. However, he did not differ with Kappan's demand for the Pala seat, sources said.
Pawar dials CM
Earlier NCP national president Sharad Pawar had called up Pinarayi Vijayan over phone and discussed the issue. The chief minister told Pawar that his party would be given due consideration during seat allocaton for the upcoming assembly elections.
NCP state president T P Peethambaran, who is at odds with the Saseendran camp, will call on Pinarayi on Tuesday to brief him about his stand on the issue. He had slammed the CPM at the Ernakulam district leadership meet on Monday.