National

Prime Minister to arrive in Kollam this afternoon

VINSON KURIAN  THIRUVANANTHAPURAM | Updated on January 22, 2018 Published on December 15, 2015

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will, on the second day of his visit to Kerala, reach Kollam in the afternoon where he will unveil the statue of former chief minister R Sankar. 

Modi will speak at a function being hosted by the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana (SNDP) Yogam and the SN Trust, two organisations of the Ezhava community spearheaded by its leader Vellappalli Natesan. 

Natesan is secretary of the SN Trust and General Secretary of the SNDP Yogam. 

Natesan recently floated a political party, Bharat Dharma Jana Sena, which is widely thought would align with the BJP in the elections to the State Assembly due in the next few months. 

The Kollam session being attended by the Prime Minister will be notable for the omission of Chief Minister Oommen Chandy from the list of dignitaries.  

CHANDY NOT IN LIST

An invitation sent to the Chief Minister was withdrawn after Natesan used his discretion since, according to him, it was a private function and did not form part of the Prime Minister's official engagements.    

The forced 'no-show' of the Chief Minister has since triggered a heated political controversy with the entire Opposition teaming up with the government to 'protest the insult perpetrated on the state.'

After the statue unveiling ceremony, the Prime Minister will pay a visit to the Sivagiri Mutt and pay obeisance at the memorial of Sree Narayana Guru. 

Later in the evening, he will leave for Thiruvananthapuram and hold discussions with the Chief Minister and his cabinet colleagues during a brief stopover at the airport. He will take off for New Delhi soon after.  

Published on December 15, 2015
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