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Party above individual: LDF’s message by not giving Shailaja another shot

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Thiruvananthapuram, May 18: One of the biggest news of the day was the shock exclusion of K K Shailaja from the new Kerala Cabinet.

Shailaja also known as teacher had won laurels for the manner in which she tackled the health sector hit badly by the COVID-19 pandemic. She was also lauded for her role as health minister when Kerala was hit by Nipah. Shailaja was also praised for growth of the public health system, which helped the state battle the pandemic.

Party above individual: LDF’s message by not giving Shailaja another shot

Her performance as the health minister and the fact that she won the election by the highest margin, left no doubt in anyone's mind that she would earn a Cabinet berth. Now Shailaja was not the only one excluded. The party decided not to give a second term to any minister from the previous LDF government barring Pinarayi Vijayan.

No ministerial berth for K K Shailaja, all new faces in Vijayan's new Cabinet No ministerial berth for K K Shailaja, all new faces in Vijayan's new Cabinet

The decision only shows the clout Vijayan has in the party and government. He had decided not to give tickets to any legislator who has completed two consecutive terms. While many within the party felt that this would affect the party in many areas, Vijayan managed to prove them all wrong and won a historic second term.

The decision of dropping Shailaja sends a message that the LDF sought a mandate on its achievements and not that of any one individual. The LDF also sends a clear message that the party is above an individual.

The state committee of the Marxist party, which met at its headquarters AKG Centre here elected Vijayan to lead the party, a CPI(M) statement said.

The party state committee, chaired by senior leader Elamaram Kareem, decided to entrust Shailaja with the position of party whip, the statement added.

Vijayan had scripted history in the April 6 Assembly polls by leading the Left front to a consecutive term, bucking the over four-decade-old trend in the state of the people choosing between Communists and Congress-led governments alternately.

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