The Nationalist Congress Party today rejected demands for resignation of its nominee in the CPI(M)-led LDF government in Kerala, Thomas Chandy, who is facing charges of lake encroachment in Alappuzha district. Amid mounting pressure on the government from the opposition seeking Chandy's resignation, party state president T P Peethambaran Master said there was no such situation where the resignation of the state Tourism Minister was required. He said neither CPI(M) or CPI, the two major constituents in the LDF government, had made any such demand so far. Besides, the NCP has also not discussed the matter as there was no need to discuss a 'non-issue', he told reporters. The veteran leader questioned the "credibility" of media reports suggesting that the Advocate General has given legal advice backing the report submitted by the Alappuzha Collector, alleging encroachment by the resort in which Chandy has a stake. "We don't have any idea about such legal advice," he said when asked about the AG's legal advice to the government. NCP made its stand clear on the issue ahead of the crucial LDF meeting tomorrow in Thirunvananthapuram in which leaders of the alliance, including Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan,are expected to discuss the AG's report and take a decision on it. Meanwhile, CPI state secretary Kanam Rajendran said the state government would take an appropriate decision on the issue. "The LDF has always taken a stand against land encroachers," the CPI leader said in Kottayam. The government had sought the AG's legal opinion after Collector T V Anupama in her report stated there was large- scale violation of the Kerala Land Conservation Act and Conservation of Paddy Land and Wetland Act by Water World Tourism company, in which Chandy is a board member. The Marthandam backwaters near the luxury hotel in Alappuzha had been allegedly reclaimed for a parking area and a road had been constructed through the paddy field to the resort, violating norms.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)