Achuthanandan Passed Over, Pinarayi Vijayan Will Be Kerala CM 

Vijayan was chosen over VS Achuthanandan as the new Chief Minister of Kerala. 

2 min read

It’s final. Pinarayi Vijayan will be sworn-in as the 22nd Chief Minister of Kerala on 25 May at Thiruvananthapuram. The CPI(M) politburo member beat out his rival, the 92-year-old VS Achuthanandan for the top post.

Achuthanandan is a former chief minister and politburo member, but was removed from the Marxist party’s highest decision making body because of his “ideological positions”. He still remains the most popular leader in the Left front, if not in Kerala.

Achuthanandan’s age is being cited as the reason for passing him over, but sources within the CPI(M) told one of our senior reporters that internal politics and factionalism in the politburo may be another reason for Vijayan’s ascension.

Pinarayi is a good administrator and leader in his own right. VS is the most popular leader and would have helped in 2019 [general elections]. After the loss in Bengal though, his supporters could not push through VS’ candidature. 
CPI(M) Member

While Achuthanandan was a potential candidate considering his popularity among the masses, the decision to choose Vijayan as the Chief Minister was likely due to the massive debacle in the West Bengal Assembly election.


If one were to go by the past decade of political events in the state, there’s no doubt that Achuthanandan is the people’s leader but Vijayan’s strength lies in his organisational abilities, as is apparent with the way he handled the power ministry in the 1990s.

Vijayan who is a close associate of fellow politburo member Brinda Karat and CPI(M) former general secretary Prakash Karat, has also known to be at loggerheads with Achuthanandan.

(With inputs from Aakash Joshi)

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