KK Shailaja, Kerala’s Health Minister, begins her day by assembly guests at her dwelling in Kannur’s Mattannur, now her constituency for the April 6 election. Mattannur is a CPI(M) stronghold the place state minister EP Jayrajan gained with a margin of round 40,000 votes within the final election.
A fast change of sari, a smile and KK Shailaja, 65, is prepared for her day’s marketing campaign.
At numerous assembly stops, KK Shailaja speaks of the Left authorities’s efforts to comprise the Covid pandemic. “At a time even the most developed countries were helpless with increasing deaths, Kerala has a death rate of 0.4 per cent. This is our biggest achievement. In other states, you’ve had people go without food for days. In Kerala, government gave every card-holder free ration,” she says.
“This is a CPM bastion. I don’t support this party. I support the United Democratic Front (UDF), but Shailaja will win here. She is a good candidate,” says Hashim. At his store, completely promoting masks, election season is on show. Masks with CPI(M), Congress and BJP symbols are an enormous draw. “Masks with the CPM logo are most in demand here. This is my business, so I am happy about the sales,” Hashim grins.
He is but to get any masks depicting RSP, an ally of the Congress-led UDF, fielded from right here in a shock transfer.
KK Shailaja is contesting for the fourth time and has misplaced one state election. As a well being minister, she led Kerala’s efforts towards the outbreak of Nipah and the Covid pandemic.
She grew up in Mattannur, the place she accomplished college and commencement. KK shailaja was energetic in Left politics from college. She additionally met her future husband, Ok Bhaskaran, throughout their school time Left activism.
Ms Shailaja went on to show in a faculty, and until at present, is commonly identified by the nickname “Teacher”
Her husband, at the moment the Mattannur CPI(M) Area Committee Member, additionally retired as a instructor greater than a decade in the past. The couple have two sons of their 30s.
On the marketing campaign path, Ms Shailaja is juggling her constituency conferences together with her ministerial tasks. “It is very tiring. After the day’s campaigning I am exhausted. But the official work has to go on. I make sure I speak to my health secretary in the evening and I take calls from my officials – anytime. If they are calling, it could be a good news or a bad news, anything…” she says.
She is called a arms-on minister who likes to dive into points and work in a staff with a peaceful demeanor. She appears to have gained over her personal following, no matter political affiliation.
“I am a retired a navy officer. I don’t support any particular party. But I like KK Shailaja. She is an able minister. She should be back as health minister. Someday, may be as Chief Minister too,” mentioned a retired officer.
“Just watch. The margin of win is going to be around 60,000 for Shailaja. People in Kerala have seen what a government can do,” says a store proprietor.
It’s on this constituency that CP Mohammad managed to arrange a store 4 months in the past. The 56-yr-outdated named it “Shuhaib” after his 22-yr-outdated son, a youth Congress employee, who was murdered round three years in the past. Among these arrested have been CPI(M) employees and supporters.
“I still don’t know why my son was murdered. He was our only breadwinner. I have three daughters. His mother and I have not been able to have one hearty laugh in the last three years. No CPI(M) leader has even met us or offered us words of assurance,” Mohammad says.
The UDF has fielded an RSP candidate, Illikkal Augusthy, from this constituency. The candidate says he has Mohammad’s help. “This is one of our campaign points, that there must not be political murders,” says Illikkal Augusthy.
“We don’t have a base or strong cadre in Mattannur when compared to the Muslim League or Congress. But we will work together.”
Ms Shailaja, in response to Augusthy’s problem on political murders, says: “We all want peace. No one should die. From any party. No one deserves this. Only peace can ensure that we can work progressively together.”
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