Thiruvananthapuram: Congress in Kerala,
heading the United Democratic Front (UDF) on Wednesday reached an
agreement with its major ally Indian Union Muslim League on
seat-sharing, but problems continued with Kerala Congress-M
In the bilateral talks held here today, Congress also
struck a deal with Communist Marxist Party (CMP), allotting
three seats to the party led by M V Raghavan. CMP state
secretary K R Aravindakshan told reporters that Raghavan would
contest from Azhikode in Kannur district.
However, Kannur DCC president P Ramakrishnan voiced
resentment over the unilateral announcement by the CMP on the
An agreement eluded even after second round of talks with
JSS headed by K R Gowri as the party insisted on its demand
for five seats.
After the parleys, IUML leader P K Kunhalikutty said an
agreement had been reached on the number of seats and the
constituencies, but the details would be announced after the
seat-sharing talks with other partners were over.
The demand of Kerala Congress-Mani that it should get 22
seats continued to be a major problem for the UDF. One more
round of discussion is slated to be held with KC-M leaders
Mani held that with the added strength after the merger
with P J Joseph faction, his party deserved the number of
seats it demanded.
The Congress leaders` talks with Kerala Congress-Jacob
also remained inconclusive.
In the LDF, the lead partner CPI-M began parleys with CPI,
which has been pressing for at least 30 seats.
Meanwhile, the CPI-M state committee concluded its two-day
session without deliberating on the vital question on fielding
Chief Minister V S Achuthanandan for the contest.
Party sources indicated that a decision on key candidates
would be finalised next week after eliciting opinion from
district units of the party.