Thiruvananthapuram, Mar 18 : Bowing to public pressure,the CPI (M) in Kerala today reversed its decision to drop Chief Minister V S Achuthanandan from contest for the state assembly, bringing the party's most popular face to poll arena to lead the LDF for April 13 polls.
The dramatic turn, which was a replay of 2006 scenario,came after the central leadership directed the state unit to revoke its decision, factoring in widespread protests from the party rank and file as well general public over the issue.
The 87-year-old veteran will be contesting from his sitting Malampuzha seat in Palakkad district,as per the list of candidates announced by the party here this afternoon.
The faction-riven state unit domitated by state secretary Pinarayi Vijayan had sealed the fate of 87-year-old CPI-M stalwart on Wednesday.
The decision,however, pushed the party into a deep crisis t with workers taking to the street condemning the party decision to dump Achuthanandan.Many of the district committees of CPI-M also aired their strong feelings against the decision, which also made the party to revoke its earlier decision.
The developments were taken seriously by the top rung of the national and the available members of the polit bureau held two rounds of discussion in New Delhi since yesterday and sent a clear message to the state secretariat for reversing its decision.
In 2006 also Achuthanandan made a dramatic come back to the electoral field thwarting the moves of the rival faction led by Viajayan which intially managed to keep him off the fray.
The move to dump Achuthanandan sparked widespread proetest at the time also, compelling the central leadership to prevail upon the state unit to bring back him.
Achuthanandan is seen as the "best bet" of the LDF to face the huge challenge posed by the Congress-led UDF, which had put up a splendid performance in the last Lok Sabha and civic polls.
Despite his advanced years and the machinations of his rivals, a set opf developments in the last couple of months have boosted Achuthanandan's image as a unitiring crusader against corruption and morality in public life.
Imprisonment of Kerala Congress (B)leader and former minister R Balakrishna Pillai in a graft case and renewed interest in palmolein import graft case helped Achuthanandan's rating to go up among the public.
Other prominent leaders who figure in the party list included Home Minister and PB member Kodiyeri Balakrishnan (Thalassery),ministers Thomas Isaac(Alappzua), Elamaram Kareem (Beypore),M A Baby (Kunduara), P K Gurudasan (Kollam), S Sarma (Vaypeen), A K Balan (Tharoor), G Sudhakaran (Amalpauuzha) and assembly speaker K Radharishnan (Chelakkara).PTI