Will continue as sentinel of people: Achuthanandan

As he announces stepping down as leader of the opposition, the CPI(M) veteran ducks questions on whether he was sidelined

Thiruvananthapuram: CPI(M) veteran VS Achuthanandan yesterday said he would continue to play the role of a “sentinel” of the people of Kerala, a day after the party unanimously nominated Pinarayi Vijayan over him for the CM’s post.

Kerala CM-designate Pinarayi Vijayan meets CPI(M) veteran VS Achuthanandan at his residence in Thiruvananthapuram. Pic/PTIKerala CM-designate Pinarayi Vijayan meets CPI(M) veteran VS Achuthanandan at his residence in Thiruvananthapuram. Pic/PTI

Achuthanandan, who called a press meet to announce that he was stepping down as opposition leader, refused to be drawn into any matters relating to the selection of party politburo member Vijayan as the new LDF chief minister.

“I will continue as a sentinel of the people of Kerala by upholding the spirit of the Left and taking up people's issues,” Achuthanandan (92) said shortly after the CM-designate made a courtesy call on him at his residence.

Achuthanandan, who was the LDF’s face in the campaign during the May 16 assembly election, evaded questions on whether he had been sidelined.

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When Vijayan met Achuthanandan earlier, the CM-designate told him that the LDF ministry would be sworn in on May 25 and invited him for it.

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Sonowal eyes sealing border
Listing two priorities for the new government in Assam, CM-designate Sarbananda Sonowal yesterday said sealing of the borders with Bangladesh in two years and completion of the National Register of Citizens — two of his poll promises — will be done to put an end to infiltration.

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