Kerala HC rejects Thomas Chandy's plea

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Mr. Vijayan has received flak for his alleged kid-glove treatment of Chandy despite Alappuzha district collector submitting a report to the government confirming that the minister illegally reclaimed revenue land to construct an approach road and a parking lot for the resort owned by him.

The court slammed the minister for approaching it challenging the government in which he is also a part.

Amid increasing demands for the resignation of Transport Minister Thomas Chandy, who is facing encroachment charges, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan today said that an "appropriate decision" would be taken at the right time.

"It's a classic case for disqualification". It is based on the principle of collective responsibility that the entire cabinet resigns even if a no-confidence motion is passed against a single minister, it pointed out.

"It shows that you have no trust in your own government and chief minister", the bench said, observing it was "extremely improper" for a minister to file a petition against his own government.

In Kochi, the NCP state executive discussed the matter and chose to inform the national leadership about its decision on the matter. Chandy, a businessman-turned-politician, is NCP's only minister in the Cabinet. Congress leader Ramesh Chennithala said the verdict leaves no option for Chandy but to quit.

The Division Bench of Justice P.N. Raveendran and Justice Devan Ramachandran rejected the plea filed by Chandy.

The minister had earlier said that a decision on his resignation would be taken only after getting the copy of court verdict. On Tuesday, Vijayan told reporters that he has learned about the court order and is in talks with the NCP leadership.

Chandy is the third minister to face allegations in the almost 16-month-old Vijayan's cabinet.

Amid mounting pressure on Chandy to step down, NCP Kerala president T P Peethambaran said the state unit would convey to the national leadership views on the issue and await its decision. While E.P. Jayarajan, minister for industries and sports, had to leave after facing charges of nepotism past year, A.K. Saseendran, minister for transport, quit following allegations of sexual misconduct in April.