Despite rumblings within party, ‘Captain’ Vijayan can script electoral history

With just hours left for the crucial April 6 Kerala assembly polls, things appear fluid in Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s home turf at Kannur, if one were to analyse the mood.

It’s for the first time that Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan is leading his party and the Left Democratic Front in the state.

In today’s world, it’s the social media, which even Vijayan himself has accepted, is their biggest campaigner. A post by one of the most popular sons of the soil Communists in Kannur, P. Jayarajan indicates that things are a bit fluid for the CM.

Ever since Vijayan, who at the moment has the party under his tight grip, decided to bring a new rule that all those who have won two successive elections need not be given renomination, 33 sitting legislators (which included some who have had one term) of the CPI-M were replaced and the CM became popular as ‘Captain Pinarayi’.

With ‘Captain’ Pinarayi getting used over and over in the campaign, the first person to have got uneasy was none other than P. Jayarajan. He said it was against the rules of a cadre-based party, where ‘adulation’ is forbidden.

Incidentally all these years, in the CPI-M, the party was always divided between the Kannur lobby and the non-Kannur lobby and ever since Vijayan became the last word in the CPI-M and the government, aberrations surfaced in the Kannur lobby. When State Industries Minister and two-time legislator E.P. Jayarajan failed to get a renomination, cracks surfaced in the lobby.

Politburo member Kodiyeri Balakrishnan had to step down from the post of State Secretary last year, after his younger son Bineesh Kodiyeri was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate in Bengaluru.

On Saturday, it appeared that things were not rosy, after Jayarajan came out with his post on his Facebook page where he said he supports the view of Balakrishnan who had said that in their party everybody is a comrade and the party is the captain.

“So a section of the media need not get jittery over the support that the Chief Minister is getting, as it’s not the individual, but the party and the Left Democratic Front that’s getting the people’s support,” wrote Jayarajan.

A media critic on condition of anonymity said Vijayan’s fate will be sealed on May 2 and if he fails to retain power, he will have to do a lot of answering, but if he manages to write electoral history in Kerala, he will undoubtedly figure in the list of the all time great Communists in India.