By Sanu George
Thiruvananthapuram, Dec 5 (SocialNews.XYZ) While things seemed calm in the otherwise faction-dominated Kerala Congress party, the sudden arrival of dapper Thiruvananthapuram Lok Sabha member Shashi Tharoor to contest the post of chairman of the great former party, the majority of the top brass in Kerala unity seem to have been taken on the wrong foot.
The first blow to the current Congress leadership, led by State Party Chairman K. Sudhakaran and opposition leader VD Satheesan, came when 16 Congress heads of state signed the nomination form for Tharoor.
What came as a shock was Lok Sabha members like Hibi Eden and three-term MP Raghavan, former two-time lawmaker KS Sabarinathan and even a veteran like Thampanoor Ravi backed Tharoor. Seasoned veterans like AK Antony, Satheesan, Ramesh Chennithala, Kodikunnil Suresh and a large number of others supported the official candidate, Malikarjuna Kharge.
Although Tharoor has lost a mile, already a household name among the young and educated, let alone women, his stock has increased enormously, much to the dismay of the otherwise heavyweight Congress party.
And quick to cash in on his newfound ascendancy, Tharoor ruffled Satheesan and others when he announced his plans to tour across the state.
But, amid the turmoil and when the murmurings intensified, Tharoor received a major boost when former Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, currently in poor health, extended an olive branch and it seems to have caused further hiccups in the anti-Tharoor camp.
Over the weekend, Tharoor received an enthusiastic welcome when he arrived at Chandy’s stronghold at Kottayam and Pathanamthitta.
While those aligned with Satheesan and Chennithala stood apart, Chandy’s men came in large numbers and the significant aspect was the presence of the youths.
A media critic who spoke on condition of anonymity said the biggest blight of the Congress party is that it has virtually no support from 18 to 23 year olds, mostly new voters in every election.
“Just look at the large number of young people who attend the Tharoor meeting in North Kerala and during weekends in Kottayam and Pathanamthitta. Could leaders like Antony or others now attract this segment to their The writing on the wall is clear that after Chandy’s declining health, Congress has only one crowd puller left and that is Tharoor and nothing else. realize that, the better. If not, it might just be curtains for the big old Kerala party too,” said the spokesman, who did not wish to be identified.
Incidentally, the biggest shock came during the April 2021 Assembly polls, when the Congress party led by Chennithala expected to claim victory in the Assembly elections. But, when the votes were counted, the chief minister of the left led by Pinarayi Vijayan wrote in the history books by becoming the first CPI(M) government to retain power.
Following the debacle, after the intervention of the party high command, a new leadership took over under Sudhakaran and Satheesan. With Tharoor now making waves, for all intents and purposes, the hopes of at least half a dozen chief ministerial candidates have fallen flat and that is what has put the cat among the party pigeons here.