Kerala PM Vijayan, secretaries shun ‘at place’ gathering amidst conflict with governor

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Kerala Governor’s Reception Snubbed by State Chief Minister Amid Rift

In a significant display of dissent, Kerala state chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan, along with his council of ministers, abstained from attending the ‘At Home’ reception hosted by state Governor Arif Mohammed Khan. This event took place on Friday, 75th Republic Day, as reported by sources from Reader Wall.

No Attendees from Government at the Reception

The ‘At Home’ reception was scheduled between 6.30pm to 7.30pm, but interestingly, none from the invited chief minister, cabinet ministers or the MLAs made an appearance. However, the principal secretary of the general administration department, KR Jyothilal, was a solitary representative from the government side. Neither the chief secretary nor the state director general made presence at the programme.

Although Khan and Vijayan attended the Republic Day celebrations at Central Stadium earlier the same day, no mutual greetings were exchanged.

Governor’s Statement

During the Republic Day programme, Khan mentioned that higher educational institutions should be protected from external interference. He urged to avoid group rivalries or internal power struggles denting governance. Khan also pointed out the importance of cooperative federalism being supported by all entities including the constituent states of the union.

Tension Mounted After a Shortened Budget Session Speech

An intensifying feud between Khan and the state government was on display when Khan abruptly truncated his budget session speech in the Kerala assembly. Despite a warm reception from the Chief Minister, Khan skipped pleasantries and went on to deliver a remarkably brief address of only a few minutes in which he only communicated the closing paragraph of his prepared speech.

Khan’s Statement

Addressing the assembly, Khan said, “Honourable speaker, chief minister, ministers, leader of opposition and members, it is my honour and privilege to address this august body of representatives of the people of Kerala, marking the beginning of the 10th session of the 15th Kerala Legislative Assembly.”

He then jumped to the concluding section of the 61-page policy address and read “Let us remember that our greatest legacy lies not in buildings or monuments, but in the respect and regard we show to the priceless legacy of the Constitution of India and the timeless values of democracy, secularism, federalism and social justice…” After delivering these words, he briskly exited the assembly.

Rift Over Higher Education Institutes and Non-Signed Bills

The latest developments come in the wake of a simmering feud between the governor and the Left government over various issues including the executive functions of the state’s higher education institutions and his refusal to sign certain bills passed by the assembly. This tussle has sparked widespread protests across the state, primarily led by the CPI(M), its youth wing – Democratic Youth Federation of India, and its student outfit – Students Federation of India.

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