Quick Edit | Kodiyeri Balakrishnan's see-through medical leave

Quick Edit | Kodiyeri Balakrishnan's see-through medical leave
Kodiyeri Balakrishnan

The inevitable in Kerala politics has happened with Kodiyeri Balakrishnan's decision to step down as CPM state secretary. The official version is that the Kannur strongman is going on leave for advanced treatment. However, it's a layman's logic that Kodiyeri was forced to take the crucial step following the controversies over his son Bineesh Kodiyeri, who has been arrested by the ED in a drug-related case.

The 'medical leave' theory also remains suspect as Kodiyeri had not sought leave when he went to the US for treatment earlier. Nor was the charge of secretary given to another comrade.

With Kodiyeri at the helm despite Bineesh's arrest – that came after a slew of controversies involving him and his brother Binoy, CPM was posed with a series of harsh questions over ethics and integrity, not only from political opponents but from the thinking public also. The party's defence that Kodiyeri cannot be held responsible for the actions of his adult son was nothing short of frowning upon the people of the state. The defence in fact makes a mockery of the rectification documents of the party that spoke of the discipline expected from the family of party members.

It's obvious that the party preferred to put up a confident and brave face by keeping Kodiyeri as secretary no matter what the agencies said or the public thought. The party could have done better by asking Kodiyeri to stay away until the air became clear. It might have been prevented from showing such bravado by the fears that such an action could be interpreted as a confession of the Kodiyeri Jr's crimes. Now, the party seems to have realised that such a position would only increase the intensity of the damage that has already been done. With the local body elections round the corner, the party apparently wanted to do a quick damage control exercise by moving Kodiyeri out of the picture, at least for the time being. So, now is the latest development going to help the party in any way? Very unlikely, it seems.

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