Thiruvananthapuram: A Left plan to field a few candidates who are not from their parties in Kerala has come in for strong criticism.
Kerala sends 20 members to the Lok Sabha. This time unlike in the past, the CPI-M seems to have zeroed on two `outside' candidates and two former Congressmen, while the CPI is toying with the idea of fielding a doctor in the prestigious state capital constituency.
The CPI-M has so far given its nod, though not officially announced, to field prominent character and comedy artiste Innocent as well as retired IAS official Christy Fernandes, who was secretary to then president Prathiba Patil.
The surprise in the CPI-M's proposed list includes Philipose Thomas, an AICC member and former Congress district president in Pathanamthitta, and V. Abdurehman, a former Ponnani Muncipality vice chairman, also from the Congress party.
Innocent is proposed to be fielded from the traditional Congress bastion at Chalakudy in Thrissur district, Fernandes from Ernakulam, Thomas from Pathanamthitta, and Abdurehman from Ponnani.
"Even though there are better actors than me in the film industry and experienced men in their party (CPI-M), I am happy that I have been selected because they feel that I will be able to win back the seat," said Innocent.
But the CPI-M has ruffled many a feather in giving a seat to Innocent. Local party members have already expressed their ire against the party's choice of Innocent.
Rumblings began in Ernakulam in the CPI-M over the selection of Fernandes. He responded to the criticism that he is an outsider by saying he has roots in Ernakulam and has a huge circle of friends.
In the capital city constituency, the CPI appears to have zeroed in on Bennet Abraham, a practising anaesthetist with a leading private hospital.
But his name too has come under fire from a section of the CPI.
In the 2009 Lok Sabha polls, the Left opted for just one non-party candidate, who lost heavily in the Ponnani constituency.
The CPI-M in the past has unsuccessfully fielded film personalities like director Lenin Rajendran and also late actor Murali.