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Cong MLA’s linking CPI(M) with mafia leaves Kerala CM fuming

Thiruvananthapuram, Feb 2 (IANS) The Kerala Assembly on Thursday witnessed angry exchanges between the treasury and the opposition benches after a Congress MLA accused the ruling CPI(M) of having links with the mafia.

Congress legislator Dr Mathew Kuzhalnadan’s allegations also left Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan fuming.

Kuzhalnadan was seeking leave for an adjournment motion on an incident wherein a CPI(M) councillor at Alappuzha — A.Shahnawaz — was suspended by his Alappuzha district party unit, last month after his lorry carrying banned tobacco products was taken into custody.

Two people arrested with the consignment turned out to be close associates of the councillor, who first refused to acknowledge the two arrested.

But later, their pictures at Shahnawaz’s birthday celebrations apparently forced the party to take action.

While the two members of the youth wing of the CPI(M) were ousted from the party, the powerful Shahnawaz was only suspended, for his closeness with State Minister for Culture, Fisheries Saji Cherian, who till recently was the Alappuzha district secretary.

In the Assembly, Kuzhalnadan alleged that the ruling CPI(M) and its top leaders harbour their cadres engaged in undesirable activities and the situation is very grave when even Ministers come in their support of their cadres.

At this, Vijayan lost his cool and said just because someone is a legislator, it doesn’t give him the right to say ridiculous things about a party like CPI(M). It will not be accepted, he asserted.

Soon Leader of Opposition V.D.Satheesan got up and said , it was he who had authorised Kuzhalnadan to present this incident in the Assembly and that he had only stated facts.

However, State Excise Minister M.B.Rajesh dismissing brushed aside the allegations levelled by Kuzhalandan and said a probe is on and the wrong-doers will not be allowed to go scot free, but the Opposition just cannot name who is the accused and arrest cannot happen on their demands.

“The problem is the Opposition presently is down and out politically is unable to function constructively and hence this impasse from them,” said Rajesh.

With the Speaker disallowing a discussion to the adjournment motion, the entire opposition staged a walk-out of the house.