Arif Mohammed Khan wears mundu better than any of them, I think that's the problem: Kerala Guv

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan with Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan. File photo: Manorama

Panaji: In a veiled reference to his ongoing conflict with the Left government, Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan on Saturday said that some individuals were not comfortable with the fact that he wears a mundu (dhothi) better than any of them.

"There are 'some happenings' in the southern state but they should be ignored," he said.

Khan was addressing a function organised by his Goa counterpart P S Sridharan Pillai at Raj Bhavan at Dona Paula to commemorate the completion of the Goa Gram Sampurn Yatra.

Without taking names, Khan also said the "real problem with some people is he wears mundu (dhoti) better than any of them though he is not born in Kerala" and added, "there is no dispute or conflict".

There are some happenings in Kerala. Yes, certain things have happened but we should learn to ignore them, Khan said.

The Kerala government had earlier this month issued an ordinance stripping Governor Khan of the chancellorship of state universities. It also later decided to convene the Assembly session beginning December 5. He had, however, said the ordinance has become "infructuous" as the Assembly is summoned.

I think the real problem is not what some people are speaking. The real problem is that Arif Mohammad Khan who is not born in Kerala wears mundu better than any of them. There is no dispute, no conflict, he added.

The Kerala governor also said sometimes people feel "if you are not born in Kerala why do you look so much like a Malyali".

I am proud of the fact....I feel Malyali, Kerala.. It is true Kerala is the last (southernmost) state but nobody should forget....We give all the credit to our very great first deputy prime minister Sardar Patel (for the unification of princely states), he said.

Khan said Patel should be given the credit for building a united India.

"We proudly say we are the largest democracy in the world. Sardar Patel had built the edifice the structure, the foundation, was laid by great Adi Shankaracharya who was from Kerala, he said.

Kerala may be located in a corner of the country but the heart of India beats in Kerala, he said.

Kerala has shown the way to Indian unity and I am proud of this fact. I can't thank my stars. I am thankful to President and PM (prime minister Narendra Modi) that I was chosen to head Kerala state, he said.

Amid a bitter battle between him and the ruling LDF, Khan had earlier this month refuted allegations of politicising his constitutional position.

Addressing the gathering, Goa Governor Pillai on Saturday referred to some reports about travel expenses reportedly incurred by Khan.

In some papers, it is stated the Kerala governor spent a huge amount on travel. While the Kerala governor is criticized for spending Rs 20 lakh in eight months, I had spent around Rs 48 lakh in eight months to travel. Public representatives are supposed to travel," he added.

(With PTI inputs.)

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