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Kerala local body polls litmus test for Left

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Thiruvananthapuram: The upcoming three-tier local body elections in Kerala will be a litmus test for the Left which has been on a steady decline since winning the assembly elections in 2006.

It is now going to be a decade since the Left Democratic Front (LDF) led by the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) won the local body polls in Kerala, a state it considers its bastion.

The polls will take place on November 2 and 5. The results will be out on November 7.

After winning the 2006 assembly polls, the LDF has ended up on the losing side in every electoral battle in the state.

It was washed out in the 2009 Lok Sabha battle, quickly followed by three losses in assembly by-elections.

The shocker came in 2010 when for the first time in years, the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) trounced the LDF and secured close to 65 percent of the local bodies.

The Left also lost the 2011 assembly polls to the UDF but narrowly.

The UDF won two by-elections in 2012. And in the 2014 Lok Sabha election, Kerala elected the second largest contingent of Congress MPs in the country after Karnataka.

Again, this year, despite various scams, the UDF won the Aruvikara assembly by-election. And with most people feeling that the Left may be in for a shock in next year’s assembly elections, the local body polls are considered very important.

Another reason that has caused a hiccup in the Left camp is the meeting in New Delhi last week between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and V Natesan, the Hindu Ezhava leader and general secretary of the powerful Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana (SNDP) Sangom that owes allegiance to social reformer Sree Narayana Guru.

For years, a major portion of the Ezhava community has always stood by the CPI-M.

“Electoral politics means numbers. With the SNDP moving closer to the BJP, the Hindu vote is going to be split and the Left is going to be hit badly. The BJP will gain. This will benefit the UDF,” said a political analyst who did not wish to be identified.

Naturally, the CPI-M has launched an attack on Natesan.

Former chief minister VS Achuthanandan has raked up corruption allegations against Natesan. CPI-M state secretary K Balakrishnan asked Natesan not to use Narayana Guru’s name to promote his political ambitions.

Natesan has made it clear that the SNDP will take the lead in uniting the various Hindu social and religious groups under one umbrella.

“I don’t know why the CPI-M is feeling restless. You wait and see what’s going to unfold. Something will be there for sure ahead of the assembly elections,” he said.

In the local body elections, 21,871 seats spread out in 941 village, 152 block and 14 district panchayats besides 86 municipalities and six corporations will be up for grab.

 

(Sanu George, IANS)

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Kerala Nurse’s Kids Education To Be Sponsored By UAE Expats

A mother of two, 28-year-old Lini Puthussery from Kozhikkode was cremated on Monday even before her family members could bid a final goodbye because of fears that the virus could spread.

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We are in the healthcare profession and are aware of the sacrifices and hardships of medical nurses

Two Abu Dhabi-based entrepreneurs have pledged to support the two children of a Kerala nurse who died after attending to Nipah virus patients in the Indian state.

A mother of two, 28-year-old Lini Puthussery from Kozhikkode was cremated on Monday even before her family members could bid a final goodbye because of fears that the virus could spread.

Santhi Pramot and Jyothi Pallat, executive directors of Avitis Institute of Medical Sciences in Palghat in Kerala, told the Khaleej Times they have pledged to sponsor the education of Puthussery’s two sons, aged 2 and 7.

Nurse
Lini wanted to find a job in the Gulf region to support her children and her aged mother. She tried many times but couldn’t get anything. Pixabay

Hailing her dedication, Santhi Pramot, who lives with her family in Abu Dhabi, said: “What she did is a heroic sacrifice in the line of duty. We want to take a small step to honour her devotion to the nursing profession and also support the family in their grief.
“We have contacted the family and informed them that their sons’ education till they are self-reliant is our responsibility.

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“We are in the healthcare profession and are aware of the sacrifices and hardships of medical nurses. It was indeed a heart-breaking incident that she died while attending to her patients,” Pramot said.
Meanwhile, Puthussery’s brother-in-law Jayakumar Velom, a Sharjah resident, said Lini aspired to work in the Gulf.

“Lini wanted to find a job in the Gulf region to support her children and her aged mother. She tried many times but couldn’t get anything,” Velom told the daily.
In a final note that Puthussery scribbled for her husband in a hospital isolation unit, she urged him to take care of their children and take them to the Gulf. (IANS)

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