News Karnataka
Thursday, February 09 2023

If it was Chandy then, it’s Pinarayi Vijayan now

Pinarayi Vijayan
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Thiruvananthapuram: In 2015, the solar scam and the main accused Saritha Nair gave much trouble to then Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, and seven years later now another female, Swapna Suresh and the infamous gold smuggling case, are giving a major headache to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.

The two cases have many similarities. In 2015 and 2016, Chandy came under fire and the man who led the revolt against him was none other than Vijayan himself and today the TV channels and social media are flush with the same old remarks that Vijayan made against Chandy then.

Vijayan’s then statement against Chandy, “Aren’t you ashamed to cling on to the power. If you have any scruples left, you should quit.”

Now 78-year-old Chandy, known for his soft demeanour, took a dig at Vijayan after hearing about the allegations of Swapna Suresh that Vijayan, his wife and daughter were involved in smuggling of currency and gold.

“In a democracy the people have the right to know the truth,” said Chandy, who in October will write into the Kerala Legislative Assembly records by becoming the longest serving legislator in the state, a record which was held by the late K. M. Mani. Chandy will beat Mani in October when he completes 52 years as a legislator.

In 2015, when the solar scam broke out, Chandy held on despite the massive political protests that Vijayan led. The people in the 2016 Assembly polls showed the exit door to Chandy and gave a huge mandate to the Left. Although it was Vijayan’s arch rival and veteran Communist and then Leader of Opposition V. S. Achuthanandan who led the Left at the elections.

But when votes were counted and the Left won 91 seats in the 140-member Assembly, out went Achuthanandan and in came Vijayan who became the Chief Minister.

And after taking over, it was Vijayan all the way and he became the unquestioned leader in the party and in the government. He registered a stunning victory in the April 2021 Assembly polls and increased his tally to 99 and has become even stronger.

However, when he was getting ready to celebrate his first anniversary of his second term in office, came the first jolt — the loss in the Thrikkakara bypolls. And a few days later on Thursday, Swapna Suresh’s revelation came.

The Congress and the BJP are demanding Vijayan’s resignation and have decided to step up their protests.

After this, Vijayan has gone into a shell forcing State BJP President K. Surendran to say that Vijayan is the biggest “coward the state has seen”. Leader of Opposition V. D. Satheesan repeated the remark that Vijayan had made about Chandy in 2015 — “Time will catch up with all those who break the law”.

At the moment all in the Left Front are solidly behind Vijayan and unlike the Congress, there is not a single voice which is against Vijayan. If it remains like that then Vijayan can breathe easy, but everything now remains on what more Swapna Suresh may further reveal.

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