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Kerala min Thomas Chandy resigns over encroachment charges

Press Trust of India  |  Thiruvananthapuram 

Transport Minister Thomas Chandy, who is facing encroachment allegations, today resigned from the CPI(M)-led headed by

The resignation comes a day after the High dismissed Chandy's challenging a report of the Alappuzha district collector on alleged encroachments by a company in which he has stake.

This is the third minister in the Vijayan cabinet to resign after the came to power in May 2016.

Earlier, A K Saseendran of the had resigned after a sleaze audio clip with a woman went viral and E P Jayarajan (CPI-M) quit on nepotism charges.

Chandy, a three-time of the Nationalist Party (NCP), had been inducted into the cabinet 8 months ago following the resignation of A K Saseendran.

had only two MLAs.

The resignation letter was handed over to the chief minister by state President, T P Peethambaran Master, after consulting the matter with party's national leadership.

Chandy, who left for Alappuzha, after attending the cabinet meeting, told a Malayalam television channel that even though the chief minister did not seek his resignation and there were no circumstances for the same, a coalition partner's (CPI) "adamant" stand made the chief minister to ask him to "rethink."

"The chief minister said we are not asking you to resign, but take a decision after consulting with your leadership," Chandy said.

Earlier, talking to reporters after cabinet meeting, Vijayan said the issue had been left to the NCP's national leadership.

A businessman-turned politician, Chandy, had been facing heat since the past few days as allegations surfaced that his company had violated rules to construct a parking area and a road through a paddy field to his Lake Palace resort in Alappuzha district.

Alappuzha District Collector, T V Anupama had in her report to the state stated that large scale violations of land conservation Act and Conservation of Paddy land and Wetland Act had been committed by the resort.

The Kerala High had observed that it was "extremely improper" for a minister to file a against his own government.

There was a violation of the collective cabinet responsibility by the minister, it had held.

Opposition Congress-led UDF and BJP had been on a warpath since the past one month demanding Chandy's resignation over the encroachment allegations.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, November 15 2017. 13:48 IST