On Monday, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has expelled MLA Mani C Kappan from the party after he took part in Congress-led United Democratic Front’s Aishwarya Kerala Yatra in Pala.
According to reports, party supremo Sharad Pawar has expelled Kappan from the party with immediate effect for indulging in “anti-party activities”, the NCP said. Kappan and his supporters took part in the Ramesh Chennithala-led Aishwarya Kerala Yatra when it arrived in Pala on Sunday. Earlier, Kappan made it known that his faction is parting ways with the CPI(M)-led Left Democratic Front (LDF) and would join the UDF.
The NCP Kerala unit split into two factions after issues arose over who from the LDF will contest from the Pala seat. Problems began after Jose K Mani-led Kerala Congress (M) defected from the UDF to the LDF last year. When Kappan was asked about the Pala seat, he made it clear that he would not give up on the seat. “The Jose faction lost the Pala seat in the Lok Sabha election. They have no right to claim that seat,” Kappan told reporters earlier.
There were also rumours that Jose had joined the LDF after senior leaders promised him the Pala seat. However, NCP leader and Kerala Transport Minister AK Saseendran denied those rumours. With Kappan joining the UDF, Jose will be contesting from the Pala seat on an LDF ticket. However, Kappan would be taking on Jose for the Pala seat in the upcoming Assembly elections.
Meanwhile, with NCP expelling him, Kappan has formed a committee to help float a new political party in Kerala. Reportedly, in their first meeting on Monday, the committee decided to open a state committee office in Thiruvananthapuram and district offices in 14 districts of Kerala. After completing necessary formalities, the party would register with the Election Commission of India. Before the Assembly election, Kappan would look to launch his party.