All eyes now on ex-minister Mani’s next move

Thiruvananthapuram, Nov 11 (IANS) Beleaguered Kerala politician K.M. Mani, who resigned as the state finance minister on Tuesday night, has played a long innings of nearly five decades as a legislator in the southern state.

The 82-year-old is the supreme leader of Kerala Congress (Mani) that has eight legislators in the Kerala assembly. The party is the third biggest component of the Congress-led United Democratic Front.

When he stepped down, he was chairman of the empowered committee of state finance ministers on Goods and Services Tax.

It was in 1965 that Mani contested his first assembly election from Palai (now Pala) in Kottayam district and won.

However, the Kerala assembly could not be constituted as none of the eight parties that contested could get a majority on its own nor were they able to come together.

It was only in 1967 that Mani first became a legislator. Since then, he has won every election from his home constituency, allowing him to set records of being a legislator for the past 48 years and presenting 13 state budgets.

A minister in various state cabinets 10 times, Mani has all along been the undisputed leader of his party.

Over the years, Mani promoted several leaders and pulled down a few whom he thought were trying to get larger in the party.

After a Kerala High Court order in the infamous bar bribery scam, all eyes are now on the old war horse as to how he strikes back. He already has alleged conspiracy in the bar bribery case.

However, at present, he is busy consulting the best legal brains in the country to see what relief he can get from the apex court, which he is likely to approach next week.


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