Though the Marxists claim they do not believe in superstitions, yet all eyes are now on who will take the state car bearing registration number 13 and also the jinxed but imposing Manmohan Ministerial bungalow standing next to the Kerala Governor’s official residence. Incidentally whenever the Congress-led UDF rules none ever considers the No 13 state car, but in 2006, present CPI-M politburo member M.A.Baby, the Education Minister in the V.S.Achuthanandan cabinet, took that car.
The legend with regards to the state-owned bungalow is whosoever resides in it, will either fail to return to the next Assembly or might not get a promotion. In the 2016 Pinarayi Vijayan government, both the No 13 car and the jinxed bungalow were not on the plate. However, when present BJP president K.Surendran took potshots against the Communists on this, Kerala Finance Minister Thomas Isaac took the challenge and took both.
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The truth is there for all to see. Everyone expected Isaac to return as the State Minister for Finance, should Vijayan get a second term, but Isaac got a rude jolt when the party decided not to field anyone who has had two successive terms, and the jinx associated with the house, came true once more. Isaac was not fielded.
Those who have stayed in the bungalow here in the past included Kodiyeri Balakrishnan (2006-11) he by virtue of becoming the party-state secretary did not return as a legislator. In 2011-16, it was Congress veteran Aryadan Mohammed who stayed here and he did not get a seat to contest in the 2016 assembly polls.
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Previous to that former CPI-M leader M.V.Raghavan who joined the Congress-led UDF after his stay as a State Minister at the bungalow 2001-06, lost the next elections. When the Vijayan government assumed office on Thursday for its second successive and a 20-member cabinet was also sworn in — the car bearing the registration No 13 went missing. State Minister for Fisheries and Culture Saji Cherian when asked if he would be willing to ride on the No 13 car, he said he doesn’t have any such issues but at the moment he was given some other number.
The No 13 car may not pose an issue, but if there are no takers for the bungalow, it could lead to an issue as this time around there are 20 cabinet ministers, one more than the previous term and if there are no takers, then one Minister will have to stay in a rented house, which means wasteful expenditure and Vijayan could come under fire. So all eyes are on who will be the new ‘owners’ of these ‘jinxed properties’. (IANS/JC)