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LDF alleges communal agenda; stages walk out

LDF alleges communal agenda; stages walk out

Thiruvananthapuram: Demanding scrapping of the ongoing delimitation process of block panchayats, CPI-M- led LDF opposition Monday alleged that it would result in the creation of 'Hindu' and 'Muslim' panchayats and walked out of the Kerala Assembly on the issue.

Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly V S Achuthanandan said IUML, a key partner in the ruling UDF, was trying to complete the delimitation process as per its 'whims and fancies' and was not considering the usual parameters like geography and population.

Former minister T M Thomas Isaac (CPI-M), who sought to move an adjournment motion on the issue, alleged that IUML, which holds the portfolio of Panchayats, was trying to create 'Hindu panchayats' and 'Muslim panchayats' in Kerala through the new delimitation process. This reflected on the IUML's vote bank politics, he said.

"The League is trying to create safe wards for the party through the present delimitation process eyeing the upcoming local body elections. So we demand that the delimitation of block panchayats should be stopped," Isaac said.

Intervening on the issue, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said the government was prepared to make amends if there were any defects in the process and the opposition would have time till this evening to submit their complaints.

Chandy said the CPI-M's allegation was 'unfortunate' and people in the state would never accept it.

Rubbishing the charges, Panchayats Minister and Muslim League leader M K Muneer said CPI-M was trying to communalise the delimitation process through false allegations, which was unbecoming of the Left party.

"LDF is trying to create division by adding a communal colour in the delimitation process. The Marxist Party should not be a B-team of BJP by playing the communal card," he said.

Minister for Rural Development and Planning, K C Joseph said the previous LDF government had tried to use delimitation eyeing the vote bank and any attempt to corner the League over the issue would not be entertained.

Following the reply of ministers, Speaker N Sakthan rejected the plea for the motion, which prompted the LDF to walk out of the House.

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