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MAY 31 2016

CPM & CPI clash over 163 MW Athirappally power project in Kerala

  • Economic Times, ET Bureau / Hyderabad
  • Created: Tue 31st MAY 2016

Less than a week after they were sworn in, the two leading parties in the ruling Left Democratic Front (LDF), CPI and CPM, have started sparring over the question whether the state should implement the proposed 163 MW Athirappally power project. 

The source of the controversy was a statement of the new power minister Kadakampally Surendran of CPM that Athirappally project has to be revisited in view of the severe power shortage in the state. However, CPI state secretary Kanam Rajendran reacted that the ministers should not speak publicly on issues that have not been discussed in the LDF. 

CPI Thrissur MLA V S Sunilkumar also joined Rajendran to condemn the CPM's plan to take up the project. Following up on the statements of the leaders, CPI mouthpiece Janayugam has also criticised the CPI(M) move to implement the project. 

However, CM Pinarayi Vijayan came in support of his power minister and said that ministers will have to make statements in their area of work. As far as the Athirappally project is concerned, the project will not affect the flow of the water nor will it affect the famous Athirappally waterfalls, he said. 

Meanwhile, CPM leader V S Achuthanandan also joined the debate by stating that the Left Front will not take up a project that does not have the support of the people. The project is being opposed by the environmentalists as it will submerge nearly 200 hectares of forest land. 

On Monday, opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala said usually a new government is evaluated after its 'honeymoon period' of six months. But in the case of LDF, the two parties have started sparring within a week of forming the goverment.



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