Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) on Thursday said efforts were being made to douse a row ignited after the Malayorama Vikasana Samithi opposed the candidature of VM Ummer, Indian Union Muslim League's (IUML) sitting MLA in Thiruvambady Assembly segment, for the May 16 elections.
KPCC president VM Sudheeran further put a gag on party workers from issuing any statements on the issue.
The Indian Union Muslim League is the second largest partner in the ruling Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF).
"As some problems have cropped up, all efforts would be made to resolve them," Sudheeran said, adding "till then it would be inappropriate to make public statements on the issue."
In an embarrassment to the UDF, the Samithi had threatened to field candidates in eight constituencies in the region if the UDF does not agree to its demand to change the sitting MLA VM Ummer as IUML candidate for the May 16 elections.
The samithi, which had accused Ummer of not taking initiative at the height of protests over the Western Ghats issue, also wanted the Congress to take over the seat from IUML and nominate a person acceptable to them.
Notably, the Thamarassery diocese-led Malayorama Vikasana Samithi had been in the forefront of the agitation against Gadgil committee report on Western Ghats.
Referring to the May 16 polls, Sudheeran said Congress leadership considers the election as crucial and hence the party would face it unitedly without any groupism.
Party leadership had given strict instructions in this regard and hoped all workers will abide by it.
It expected that there would not be any reaction from the Congress workers that would adversely affect the victory prospects, he said.
"Main agenda of the party is to win the election. No one should indulge in public debate over the candidature as the party would take serious note, if it was violated," Sudheeran added.
Describing Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana (SNDP) Yogam general secretary Vellappally Natesan as 'messenger of Sangh parivar' in the state, Sudheeran said UDF cannot associate with anybody who has direct or indirect link with Natesan.
Congress leadership meeting would be held on March 15 and 16 to give final shape to the action programme of the party to face the polls, he said.
(With PTI inputs)