Janata merger rattles Kerala ruling front

Either of the two coalitions in the state will miss a constituent if the Janata Dal (Secular) and the Janata Dal (United) decide to go by the national decision.



By T K Devasia

Published: Sat 18 Apr 2015, 12:32 AM

Last updated: Thu 25 Jun 2015, 8:38 PM

Trivandrum — The merger of six factions of the Janata Party at the all-India level may fuel realignment in Kerala’s coalition politics.

Either of the two coalitions in the state will miss a constituent if the Janata Dal (Secular) and the Janata Dal (United) decide to go by the national decision. The former which has four  legislators is now a constituent of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)-led Left Democratic Front (LDF) while the latter with two MLAs is with the ruling Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF).

The four-year-old Oommen Chandy government having the support of 73 legislators in the 140-member assembly now may find the going tough if the JD (U) goes with the LDF, which has already started wooing all its former partners in view of the coming local body and Assembly elections. The JD (U) led by M P Veerendra Kumar had quit the LDF before the 2011 Assembly elections following failure of negotiations over allocation of seats.

The strength of the UDF in the Assembly had gone up to 75 after Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP) quit LDF under similar circumstances prior to the Lok Sabha election and joined the UDF with three MLAs. However, it came down to 73 following the exit of Kerala Congress (B) from the UDF and the death of Speaker G Karthikeyan. If the JD (U) merges with JD (S) and moves to the LDF, the UDF will have to heavily depend on Kerala Congress (M) MLA P C George, who is sulking after he was removed from the post of the government chief whip, for the survival of its government. 

JD-S  parliamentary party leader Mathew T Thomas has already made it clear that it will not merge with the JD (U). 


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