Left will not compromise with communal parties says Kerala CM

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as he junks allegations of CPI(M)-BJP understanding (Recasts, adds CM's quotes) New Delhi/Thiruvananthapuram,Mar 16 (PTI) The Left will not compromise with communal parties for a few votes, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said on Tuesday, as he rejected the allegation of a BJP leader, who was denied a seat, that there was a CPI(M)-BJP understanding in some seats for the April 6 Assembly polls.

R Balashankar, currently working with the BJP's national training department, alleged that he was denied the Chengannur seat in Alappuzha district as part of a deal between the CPI(M) and BJP for the assembly polls.

According to Balashankar, Chengannur and Aranmula are the two constituencies where the BJP was on a strong footing but there was a deal between the BJP state leadership and the CPI(M) due to which he was overlooked.

The BJP leader said he had been working for the past two months in Chengannur, and all communities in the constituency including Christians and Muslims had offered him their support in the polls.

Attacking the leadership of the state party, Balashankar claimed he was denied ticket from his home constituency Chengannur after given an understanding that he would be fielded from there.

The 67-year-old leader claimed he had a very good chance for winning the seat currently held by the CPI(M) but the BJP fielded a person who is a political non-entity damaging its chance to win the seat.

'The state leadership is not wanting to win the elections.They are not interested in winning the election.

Because in the constituencies where the BJP have a great winning chance, they are putting up weak candidates,' Balashankar told PTI.

He alleged that his winnability and positivity had become a negative point for the local leaders.

'Chengannur and Aranmula are the two seats where the BJP has got a considerably good hold.I have the support of three major communities in Chengannur but was still denied the seat.In Chengannur, BJP has given seat to a person who is close to the CPI(M),' Balashankar told the media.

Vijayan laughed off the allegation and said the Left had in the 2019 assembly bypoll defeated BJP state president, K Surendran, at Konni, in Pathnamthitta district, which was the epicentre of protests during the Sabarimala agitation after the Supreme Court in 2018 allowed women of all age groups to offer worship at the Lord Ayyappa temple.

'Who contested in Konni for BJP in the last election? It was the BJP state president.We defeated him in that constituency.We have always fought against communalism.

We will not compromise with communal parties for a few votes,' Vijayan said.

CPI(M) candidate K U Jenish Kumar won the Assembly bypolls in Konni with 54,099 votes. Congress came second with 44,146 votes while, Surendran, who banked on Sabarimala sentiments, got only 39,786 votes.

Balashankar claimed he was very popular in Chengannur and his family connection in the constituency would have helped the party to get more votes.

Balashankar also claimed he had good relations with Christian, Nair and Ezhava communities in Chengannur.

But they fielded a novice, a political non-entity from the constituency and 'this is going to help the Congress or the CPI(M),' he claimed.

State BJP sources sought to downplay Balashankar's allegation, describing it as an emotional outburst from a person who did not get party ticket for the election.

The saffron party has fielded its Pathanamthitta district chief A V Gopakumar from Chengannur constituency.

Reacting to the allegation, Congress leader Ramesh Chennithala claimed there has been an unholy nexus between the CPI(M) and BJP for long.

They have been working jointly, whileformer Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said 'no partnership will remain hidden for long in Kerala.It will come out in the open. We did not expect it to come out this soon.' PTI RRT KR TGB UD BN BN