If Delhi HC verdict in his appeal against ECI order is not favourable, he can’t join another party or constitute a new one
KOTTAYAM: With the Election Commission of India (ECI) declaring Jose K Mani-led group as the official Kerala Congress (M), the rival group led by P J Joseph has suddenly landed in a tight spot. With the EC’s order, Joseph has been stripped of all powers in the KC(M). In other words, Joseph can no longer claim to be a part of the KC(M) though he has not been formally ousted from the party.
Since Joseph has lost the address of the KC(M), the first challenge before him is to establish his group as a political party in state politics. As part of the attempt, Joseph is planning to file an appeal against the ECI’s order in the Delhi High Court soon for quashing the order. However, securing a favourable judgement against the order of a constitutional institution like ECI won’t be an easy task.
Though he has plans to revive the Kerala Congress (J), if he doesn’t get a favourable order on his appeal in the court, he can’t constitute a new political party or join another one while being an MLA. Since Joseph had won the Assembly election as a KC(M) nominee, he should resign from the position before joining or reviving any political party. Those in Joseph’s camp are putting all hopes on the appeal to be filed.
At the same time, Joseph and his aide Mons Joseph will have to face the disqualification proceedings to be initiated by the KC(M) leadership as well. The KC(M) leadership has commenced putting pressure on Joseph and team to toe the party line or move out.
According to KC(M) general secretary Stephen George, the party would commence district-level leadership meetings from Thursday to take stock of the members’ allegiance to the party. “Those unwilling to abide by the party line will have to face proceedings under the anti-defection law,” he said.Meanwhile, KC(M) Kottayam district president Sunny Thekkedam filed a police complaint against Saji Manjakadambil, who was earlier appointed to the post by the Joseph faction, for still claiming the position.