Kerala land row: Opposition leaders meet governor

Thiruvananthpuram:  Kerala's opposition leaders on Thursday met Governor HR Bhardwaj demanding action against Calicut University Vice-Chancellor M Abdul Salam for allegedly trying to transfer a piece of university land to three private trusts.

Opposition leader VS Achuthanandan, after meeting Mr Bhardwaj, told reporters that the Governor sought a report from the government and promised to look into all aspects of the issue.

After facing criticism, the Calicut University syndicate in March reversed its decision to transfer a portion of the the university's land to trusts run by relatives of Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) leaders.

IUML is a coalition partner of Kerala's ruling Congress-led United Democratic Front, and the opposition Left parties and their student outfits had opposed the university's move to give away land.

Reacting to the furore, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy on Wednesday said that not an inch of land would be given away to anyone.

"The government has not received any intimation seeking transfer of land to anyone from the university, and hence where is the question of a deal as propagated by the opposition? If the CPI-M is really interested, then the government is prepared to measure all the land possessed by all the universities in the state, and hence we will know the truth," he told reporters.

Mr Chandy's remarks were pointed at the Left party, since its headquarters here stands on the Kerala University's land, given to the party by Congress leader AK Antony during his tenure as the Chief Minister. It is alleged that CPI-M later acquired more land for its office.
Story First Published: May 10, 2012 16:52 IST

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