Super seniors outnumber the young
Thiruvananthapuram: One of the pastimes of the Left Democratic Front and the United Democratic Front in Kerala is to talk of giving youth a better representation in elected posts.
The problem though, is that when the lists were finalised, seniors continue to rule the roost in both the camps.
Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee president Ramesh Chennithala and opposition leader Oommen Chandy were both on record for giving youth their due, but the list of candidates belies the expectations of young Congressmen. Worse, some senior Congressmen like M.M. Hassan and K.K. Ramachandran have been upset about their being denied a seat this time.
In comparison, the Communist Party of India-Marxist fares better in allotting seats to the youth, though youth in the left camp would also not be satisfied about the proportion of seats allotted to them.
However, the constituents of the Left Democratic Front, like the Janata Dal (Secular), the Revolutionary Socialist Party, the Nationalist Congress Party and the Kerala Congress have given short shrift to the youth.
The Congress camp has many veterans contesting, including Opposition leader Oommen Chandy, who has won seven consecutive times from Puthuppally in Kottayam district.
This is despite the reported emphasis that Rahul Gandhi is giving to youth at a national level. On the positive side, National Students Union of India national president Hibi Eden is contesting from Ernakulam and Youth Congress state president P.C. Vishnunath is contesting from Chengannur.
Among the super seniors in the fray are 93-year-old K.R. Gowriamma of the Janadhipatya Samrakshana Samithi, 87-year-old chief minister VS Achuthanandan and 82-year-old O. Rajagopal of the Bharatiya Janata Party.
Two other seniors in the UDF camp are septuagenarians, KM Mani of the Kerala Congress (M) and MV Raghavan of the Communist Marxist Party.