Kerala legislator George to quit, may join Left

Thiruvananthapuram, Oct 22 (IANS) Kerala’s six-time legislator P.C. George, who has often changed his political allegiances, has now decided to quit as a legislator and he may re-join the Left.

George, 65, was in April removed from the post of chief whip by his party – Kerala Congress (Mani), the third biggest ally in the Oommen Chandy-led United Democratic Front government.

He was later suspended for constantly attacking Finance Minister K.M. Mani, the leader of the party.

George told IANS: “My conscience does not allow me to cast my vote to the present Congress-led government. The only way out is to resign as a legislator.

“I have now realised that the biggest mistake in my career was to merge my party – Kerala Congress (Secular) with Kerala Congress (Mani) in 2010,” said George.

He is curently facing the heat as Thomas Unniyadan, the government’s chief whip, has petitioned the speaker to disqualify him as a legislator.

Chandy, state Congress president V.M. Sudheeran and a few other Congress legislators have already testified before the speaker against George.

George, who hails from the rubber plantation area of Poonjar in Kottayam district, began his political career through the students’ movement in the early 1970s.

He became a legislator for the first time in 1980 and again won when assembly elections were held two years later after the government fell. He lost the 1987 polls and did not contest the 1992 election.

Since 1996, George has never lost from Poonjar constituency.

For close to four decades, George has had an intense rivalry Mani. In 2010, the two ended their acrimony.

From 1980 till 2003, George was a member of the Kerala Congress (Joseph) until he was ousted by his party chairman and now Water Resources Minister P.J. Joseph.

In 2003 he formed his own party, Kerala Congress (Secular), and contested in 2006 as an ally of the Left Democratic Front. Midway, he shifted to the UDF camp. In 2010, he merged his party with Mani’s.

“I am yet to have any talks with the Left Democratic Front. I feel it was a mistake to pull my party out of the LDF in 2010,” added George.

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