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Congress stalwart AK Antony wants son & BJP Pathanamthitta candidate Anil to lose

Mangalore Today News Network/News18

Thiruvananthapuram, April 09, 2024: Veteran Congress leader and former Union Minister AK Antony wished that his son, Anil K Antony, who is the Bharatiya Janata Party’s candidate from Pathanamthitta Lok Sabha seat in Kerala, should lose the election.


Anil Antony

The 83-year-old Congress stalwart said that his son “should lose, and his rival, the Congress candidate in the south Kerala constituency, Anto Antony, should win with an absolute majority”.

AK Antony said that his decision to come out and address the media, to clarify his stance on the elections, was because the polls are meant to “safeguard the idea of India and its constitution”.

“It’s a do-or-die battle,” the former Kerala Chief Minister said. On the repeated queries asked about Anil’s politics, he said, “The Congress is my religion”.

AK Antony, who is India’s longest-serving Defence Minister, cited his struggles with health as a reason behind not going out of Thiruvananthapuram to campaign for the grand old party.

However, he made sure to note that even if he didn’t campaign in Pathanamthitta, Anto Antony — Congress’ candidate — would win with absolute majority.

“For me, family and politics are different. This stance isn’t new. I have maintained it since my days in KSU,” AK Antony said. The KSU (Kerala Students Union) is the Congress’ student organisation in Kerala.

Anil Antony, meanwhile, reacted to his father’s remarks and said that the Congress has outdated leaders. He said that the party only sympathises with his father for supporting sitting MP and Congress candidate Anto Antony, who recently stirred controversy by passing remarks on the Pulwama terror attack.

Further, Anil exuded confidence and said that he would emerge victorious in Pathanamthitta. He had joined the BJP in April last year.

AK Antony’s backing is a big boost for the grand old party, which faced two major setbacks after Anil and late Congress veteran K Karunakaran’s daughter — Padmaja Venugopal — joined the saffron party in Kerala.

Earlier, speculations were rife among certain quarters of Antony’s political opponents that Anil had switched over to the BJP with his family’s silent blessings. The allegations surged after a video of Anil’s mother — Elizabeth Antony — speaking at a church meeting, saying she knew her son would join the BJP surfaced online.

After Covid-19, Antony had addressed a press conference and taken a swipe at the BJP and the Left front government in Kerala. He had reinforced on why people should back the Congress to ‘reinvent’ India and to protect the Indian Constitution’s spirit.

“The party that rules at the Centre has been trying to destroy the very concept of India, and the important question is how to stop this danger,” Antony said. He went on to say that the BJP’s golden years in Kerala are over and that the NDA will finish in the third place in all of the state constituencies.

The former Kerala chief minister said, “Please write this down and keep it. They will finish in the third place in all constituencies in Kerala.”

“This year, there is no factor that favours BJP, and they are going to get a reduced share of votes,” the Congress veteran said.

He also took a jibe at Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan and said neither him nor his party has anything to do with the creation of the nation’s Constitution, and the whole credit for its creation goes to the Congress and Dr BR Ambedkar.

“His party (Communist) claimed that the independence India got was not independence and called for an armed rebellion against the Nehru government through the Calcutta Thesis,” Antony alleged.

The “Calcutta Thesis” is a document formulated by the Communist Party of India (CPI) during its second congress held in Kolkata in 1948. The thesis advocated for a strategy of armed revolution against the Jawaharlal Nehru-led Indian government.

Antony called on the people to vote for Congress to end the rule of Narendra Modi and the RSS.

“If BJP comes to power, the constitution of India will be sabotaged, and it would be the end of democracy. We need to put away that danger,” the Congress stalwart said.

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