Antony to launch Congress-led UDF poll campaign in Kerala

Thiruvananthapuram, Sep 22 (IANS) A high-level meeting here of the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) on Tuesday decided that its local body election campaign would be launched by senior Congress leader A.K. Antony on October 6 at Kochi.

Tuesday’s meeting also decided to take up all election-related issues at the leaders’ meet to be held the same day, ahead of the launch of the poll campaign. It would include the broad guidelines of seat-sharing and check if any local-level electoral adjustments with groups and organisations were required.

“The meeting found that the UDF is strongly placed to face the elections and the Left opposition appears to have already accepted defeat, as they have decided to have seat adjustments with our former allies who left us,” said UDF convenor P.P. Thankachen.

The local body elections will be held before November 17. During 2010 polls, the Congress-led UDF had won over 50 percent of the total seats for the first time.

“Today’s meeting has also directed all the allies to see that all inner party issues and intra-party issues are amicable settled. Separate meetings have been called to sort out all such issues,” Thankachen added.

He also said that the meeting expressed concern over rising incidents of violence allegedly being unleashed by the Bharatiya Janata Paty/Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh and the Communist Party of India-Marxist, especially in Kerala’s northern districts.

“We have asked the Home department to see that it deals with such violence in the same manner as in tackling cases related to extremists, because the weapons that are being used have been found to be very dangerous,” Thankachen said.

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