LDF ministers assigned to seek votes from 'own' communities: V D Satheesan

V D Satheesan addressing the media during a campaigning event for UDF candidate Uma Thomas, who is contesting the Thrikkakara bypoll, on Sunday. PHOTO: Onmanorama

Kochi: Escalating his allegation that the ruling Left Democratic Front (LDF) has been causing communal division in Kerala in the name of social engineering, Leader of the Opposition VD Satheesan on Sunday said the ministers camping at poll-bound Thrikkakara have been assigned to canvas votes from their respective communities.

"LDF ministers are doing door-to-door campaign at houses of their own community members. It is an insult to the secular fabric of Kerala," Satheesan said at a press meet in Kochi.

Asked about Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan camping at Thrikkakara, Satheesan said there was nothing unusual about it. "But he should first ensure that the votes of his own party are intact," the Congress leader said.

Satheesan alleged malpractices in the enrollment of voters and said that the UDF will initiate a legal fight against the erring officials.

"The LDF is doing everything possible to bring down our winning margin. Of the 6,386 applications that were submitted along with required documents, only 3,000-odd names were added to the voters' list. We request the election commission to immediately add the remaining names also to the list. We will also be initiating legal action against all the erring officials," he said.

Reiterating the Congress' earlier allegation, Satheesan pointed fingers at a deputy collector who was recently transferred to Kochi, saying the officer had to face disciplinary action in 2011 for discrepancies in the voters' list.

Asked if the May 31 bypoll will be an assessment of the leadership abilities of him as well as KPCC president K Sudhakaran, Satheesan said he was taking full responsibility of the election as it happens in his hometown.

The bypoll has been necessitated by the death of Congress legislator P T Thomas. The Congress has fielded Thomas's wife Uma Thomas while the CPM has picked noted cardiologist Dr Jo Joseph as its candidate. Senior leader A N Radhakrishnan is the BJP candidate. The result will be announced on June 3.

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