Kerala: Congress expels secretary for making ‘wild allegations’, another senior leader quits party

Kerala: Congress expels secretary for making ‘wild allegations’, another senior leader quits party

Secretary of the Congress’ Kerala state unit PS Prasanth was expelled from the party on Monday, ANI reported. The decision was taken after he wrote to Rahul Gandhi against All India Congress Committee General Secretary KC Venugopal.

In his letter to Gandhi, Prasanth said that the party was witnessing “destruction” in states such as Goa, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Punjab and Chhattisgarh since Venugopal took charge.

“Congress workers in Kerala are doubtful whether his [Venugopal] actions to collapse the party are in accordance with the collusion he made with BJP,” Prasanth alleged.

Later on Monday, Congress’ state unit chief K Sudhakaran said that Prasanth had been expelled for making “wild allegations”, ANI reported.

The unrest in Congress’ Kerala unit, however, does not stop at Prasanth.

Senior Congress leader AV Gopinathan quit the party on Monday, PTI reported amid a controversy over the selection of 14 district Congress committee chiefs in Kerala.

“I have been with the party for almost 50 years…I have lost all hope now,” Gopinathan, a former MLA from the Alathur constituency said, according to the Hindustan Times.

Gopinathan’s decision came after his party colleague A Thankappan was chosen over him as the district committee chief for Palakkad. Gopinathan was a member of the party’s Palakkad district committee, as well as the state unit committee.

The selection of the 14 district committee chiefs has angered other Congress leaders as well, including former Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and former state unit chief Ramesh Chennithala, PTI reported.

Two state leaders, K Sivadasan Nair and AP Anil Kumar, have been issued show-cause notices for criticising the party openly over the selection.

Sudhakaran, however, asserted that the party would not go back to discussing the matter. Speaking to reporters, Sudhakaran said that the party would move forward if it kept discussing it.

“For the good of the party it has been decided to close the chapter,” he said, according to PTI. Sudhakaran, however, added that he would take the required steps to bring Gopinathan back to the party.

Meanwhile, earlier on Monday, Chandy told reporters that discussions on selection of district chiefs with Sudhakaran and Leader of Opposition in Kerala VD Satheesan were left incomplete.

Ahead of Assembly elections in Kerala earlier this year, Gopinathan had revolted against the party after being denied a ticket. Back then, he was placated with the promise of a post within the party.

On Monday, Gopinathan said that he had no plans of joining any other party. However, there are speculations about him joining the ruling Communist Party of India (Marxist), the Mathrubhumi reported.

At the press conference where he announced his resignation from the Congress, Gopinathan praised Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. Gopinathan claimed that he would be proud to be a domestic help at the chief minister’s home.

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