A letter allegedly written by the mayor of Thiruvananthapuram Corporation, Arya Rajendran, to a senior CPI(M) leader requesting the priority list of party cadres to be appointed to temporary positions in the civil body has caused a huge stir in Kerala. caused political controversy with the opposition congress and BJP demanding her immediate resignation.
The alleged letter, addressed to CPI(M) District Secretary Anavoor Nagappan as “comrade”, was written on the mayor’s official letter pad.
Rajendran reportedly said in the Nov. 1 letter that the CPI(M)-ruled city company had decided to hire workers in various positions associated with the health department on a daily wage basis.
The controversial letter also listed various positions and the number of vacancies in each category, including public health expert, physician, staff nurse, pharmacist, lab technician, part-time sweeper and so on.
The 23-year-old mayor is said to have asked the party district secretary to provide the priority list of cadres to be appointed before November 16, the last date for submission of the candidatures.
Responding to the controversy, Anavoor Nagappan of CPI(M) said he had not noticed such a letter and that there was no need for the mayor to write such a letter.
“I have not received such a letter. No one has replied either,” he told reporters here.
When asked why a police complaint was not filed if that letter was fake, the leader said this question should be put to the mayor.
The mayor is not in the state capital because she is away for a position in Kozhikode and he was unable to contact her by phone, Nagappan added.
The party would respond to this after a discussion with the mayor about this, he said.
The issue sparked a political spat after local media reported on the controversial letter allegedly sent by the young mayor.
By stepping up their attack on the CPI(M)-led LDF government over development, Congress and the BJP accused it of being yet another example of their attempt to introduce party cadres into state-run institutions.
“The mayor, who had violated the oath of office and committed favoritism, has no right to remain in office… Arya Rajendran must resign and take legal action at the earliest,” said KC Venugopal, AICC general secretary.
Under the National Employment Exchange Act, vacancies in state and quasi-government agencies must be reported to the district’s employment offices, he said, adding that the left-ruled company, however, has violated all of these laws and procedures.
Kerala PCC chief K Sudharakan said the mayor’s alleged letter was not a surprise as the left-wing rule is only for the party cadres.
“The mayor’s letter is a blatant violation of existing laws,” he told reporters here.
The BJP’s head of state, K Surendran, took a hard line on the mayor and demanded that the administrative panel of the left-ruled civilian body be dissolved.
“This is a challenge for the lakhs of youth in the state. Kerala is now going through a terrible situation where if you want to get a job in a government agency, you have to be a CPI(M) member or a relative of CPI(M) leaders or ministers,” he said.
The Thiruvananthapuram Corporation is also following the same policy of the Pinarayi Vijayan government that jobs are reserved only for CPI(M) workers, the BJP leader said.
Meanwhile, activists from the Youth Congress and Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha marched against the city company demanding Rajendran’s resignation.
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