Thiruvananthapuram, Jan 25,2024: After Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan completed his address to the state Assembly on Thursday in a minute, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said “it need not be seen as an act of confrontation” and sought to play it down.
CM Vijayan said this at the legislature party meeting of the ruling Left which was held at the state CPI(M) party headquarters here.
The CM said in the meeting that as per the rules a governor needs to read only the first and last paragraph and Khan has done that, hence it can be allowed.
He further said, “Maybe the Governor had some health issues, which we may not know.”
Incidentally, the tension between Khan and the ruling Left Front has been prevailing for a while now .
On Thursday, the Governor arrived at the state Assembly for his customary address on the first day of the session in the New Year but read only the last paragraph of the more than 60-page address.
The two have been at loggerheads for a while and have been taking on one another in public space and it continued on Thursday when Khan arrived at the foyer of the Assembly.
Though he was greeted by Vijayan and his entourage, what was evident was everyone except Khan and Vijayan were in smiles. As soon as Vijayan handed over the bouquet to Khan, he quickly gave it to his aide and with a grim face walked into the floor of the Assembly.
After reading the opening statement that he is pleased to address the House, he said, “now, I am going to read the last paragraph…” And after reading the last paragraph, Khan took leave and when he was escorted back to the foyer, Khan and Vijayan did not look at each other. The governor, when asked by the waiting media about the reason, just folded his hands and got into the car and drove away.
Leader of Opposition V.D. Satheesan slammed Khan for disrespecting the Assembly. “This should not have happened,” said Satheesan.
Deputy leader of the Opposition P.K. Kunhalikutty said everything was over in a flash. “We were waiting to greet him, but he did not even look at us,” said Kunhalikutty.