IUML sticks to demand for 3rd LS seat in Kerala

Thiruvananthapuram, Feb 25 (IANS): The Indian Union Muslim League (IUML), which is one of the most prominent alliance partners of the Congress party in Kerala, has accelerated its demand for a third Lok Sabha seat.

IUML senior leader and member of Parliament, E.T. Mohammed Basheer said on Sunday that the party will not go back on its demand for the third Lok Sabha seat in the ensuing general elections. It is to be noted that IUML has traditionally been contesting from two Lok Sabha seats -- Ponnani and Manjeri.

There is a feeling among the party cadres and local leaders that Muslim League should get more seats in proportion to its grassroots strength and that going back from the demand would be construed as a weakness on the part of the Muslim League.

It is to be noted that in the North Kerala districts of Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannnur, Wayanad and Kasargod, the Muslim League is a prominent force and can alter the electoral results in these constituencies.

While Congress senior leaders do not deny the League’s strength, the party is in a dilemma as to how it would be able to share the seats with the League sacrificing its sitting MPs.

In the 2019 general elections, the United Democratic Front (UDF) led by the Congress notched up an impressive victory by winning 19 of the 20 seats with Congress winning in 16 seats.

If the League sticks on to its demand, the Congress may have to replace either Kozhikode MP M.K. Raghavan, Kasargod MP Rajmohan Unnithan, Vadakara MP K. Muraleedharan or even the KPCC President K. Sudhakaran’s seat, Kannur.

The Congress, according to sources, is trying for a last minute negotiation with the Muslim League promising it the next Rajya Sabha seat but the chances are bleak. If the League sticks to its demand, the Congress will have no other option but to replace one of its sitting MP’s in the current election so that the coalition remains intact, the sources added.



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Title: IUML sticks to demand for 3rd LS seat in Kerala

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