Kerala Transport Minister AK Saseendran said that the former Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Pala MLA Mani C Kappan would correct his wrongful decision after the Kerala Assembly elections.
“Kappan left NCP out of personal interest. He became an MLA due to work put in by LDF workers day and night to ensure his victory. He will not stay in UDF for long,” Saseendran told a leading Malayalam news channel, adding that the LDF will win in Pala.
During his election campaign in Pala, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan called Kappan an opportunist and said the people would give him a befitting reply. “People have always given a strong reply to opportunist. Such opportunists who betray the party and the Front should be isolated. The uniqueness of Pala constituency is that people who had once sided with the Left Front, are now confronting the same Front by betraying them,” Vijayan said.
However, Kappan hit back at Vijayan, saying that people will know who the real opportunist is when the election results are declared on May 2. “On May 2, the people of Pala will answer as to who cheated whom,” Kappan hit back.
Ahead of the Kerala Assembly elections, the NCP expelled Kappan from the party after taking part in Congress-led United Democratic Front’s Aishwarya Kerala Yatra in Pala last month. Kappan met the NCP national leadership several times over the Pala seat. In 2020, Kerala Congress (M)’s Jose K Mani, Kappan’s rival to the Pala seat, joined the LDF.
Since Jose joined the Left Front, there were murmurs that the LDF would field Jose from Pala in the Kerala Assembly election. When reporters asked Kappan whether he would give the seat, the Pala MLA replied he would not. This led to problems within the NCP state unit and resulted in the state unit splitting into two factions. One led by Kappan and the other by Saseendran.
Kappan joined the UDF during the Aishwarya Kerala Yatra in the presence of Ramesh Chennithala, Oommen Chandy, PK Kunhalikutty and PJ Joseph. He floated a new party called the Nationalist Congress Kerala (NCK) and said that a party candidate will contest from the Elathoor seat.