Puducherry Congress faces crisis ahead of the state polls

Puducherry
Image Courtesy: The Financial Express

Just a few months before the election, the Congress Government in Puducherry lost its majority as four MLAs resigned last month. Among the 30 elected MLAs in the assembly, Congress has 15 members left and along with the DMK’s three and one independent members, just crossed the majority mark of 16.

The exits are embarrassing for the Congress as it happened just before the day of Rahul Gandhi’s visit to Puducherry to plan election strategy. This is Rahul’s first visit since the party took power in the Union Territory.

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On the opposition side, All India NR Congress has 7 and AIADMK has 4. Three BJP functionaries were nominated as members of the legislative assembly. So far party leaders like A Namassivayam, E.Theeppainjan, John Kuma and Malladi Krishna have resigned. Namassivayam and E.Theeppainjan have joined BJP. Congress MLA N. Dhanavelu was disqualified for his connection with anti-party activities. Now the ruling opposition has 14 seats each in the assembly.

The Congress earlier enjoyed a strong grip on Puducherry but this time the situation seems to vary a lot. Rao who has already resigned from the ministerial post quitted MLA’s post on Monday. He took it to the tweeter to announce his resignation.

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“The situation is fluid,” Lieutenant Governor Kiran Bedi told NDTV amid talk of a show of strength in the assembly. Krishna Rao’s resignation was surprising as he had last week accompanied the Chief Minister when he went to Delhi to “push for the removal of Kiran Bedi as Lieutenant Governor.”

Elections are expected to take place by May in Puducherry and neighbouring Tamil Nadu, besides Kerala, West Bengal and Assam. The BJP is expecting much from Tamil Nadu and Kerala at this point, but the party is expecting a better chance in Puducherry, with the Congress considerably weakened.

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