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KM Mani offers to resign over bar bribery scam

KM Mani offers to resign over bar bribery scam

Thiruvananthapuram: Finance Minister K.M Mani has reportedly expressed his willingness to resign in the steering committee meeting of the Kerala Congress (M) in connection with the bar bribery scam.

"A decision on the matter will be announced today itself,"C F Thomas, Kerala Congress(M) leader and a confidant of Mani, told reporters after a crucial steering committee meeting that discussed the political situation following the fallout of the High Court verdict.

"Taking into consideration the present political situation, the meeting entrusted Mani and party senior leader and Irrigation Minister P J Joseph to take a suitable decision on the matter. A decision will be announced today itself," he said.

Though the steering committee meeting is over, Mani and Joseph held one-to-one meeting, party sources said.

On a day of hectic political activity and parleys among the UDF partners, pressure from Congress and other coalition partners mounter on 82-year-old Mani to step down.

Meanwhile, a UDF meeting has begun apparently to discuss the development in the KC(M).

Earlier in the day, KC(M) had stood firm stating that there was no need for Mani to resign as there was "nothing against" the finance Minister in the High Court order.

Meanwhile, CPI(M) veteran and State Opposition leader V S Achuthanandan said Chief Minister Oommen chandy had the right to seek Mani's resignation.

"Chief Minister was not demanding resignation of Mani due to some fear that if further probe in the bar case is held, Chandy also would become an accused in the case", he alleged.

The opposition CPI(M)-led LDF today decided to intensify their agitation to put pressure on Mani to resign.

LDF leaders said they will not allow Mani to move freely in the state and block his movement. Mani's move was a challenge to the people and showed his arrogance, they said.

Meanwhile, BJP's Yuvamorcha activists took out a protest march to Mani's residence here demanding his resignation.

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