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`LDF happy over more partners leaving UDF'

Special Correspondent

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: More new parties splitting from the UDF outfit, the merrier it is for the Opposition LDF, said V.S. Achuthanandan, Leader of the Opposition.

He said this at a press conference here on Friday when asked how he viewed the prospect of a new party headed by the senior Congress leader K. Karunakaran, now battling the Chief Minister, Oommen Chandy, and the official leadership of the Congress. "Let more people come out against the misrule of this Government. We wholeheartedly welcome their intentions," he said.

Asked whether the LDF would welcome such parties into its fold, he said: "The LDF is a coalition with certain clear policies."

Answering a question, he said he was not aware of the Karunakaran faction holding discussions with anyone in the LDF on joining the coalition.

Judgment criticised

Referring to the recent High Court verdict permitting the Coca-Cola company to draw groundwater, Mr. Achuthanandan said he had strong reservations about the basic presumptions of the verdict.

"The verdict is tantamount to saying that a multi-national company like Coca-Cola has the same rights over the groundwater of the area as the poor Adivasis and others depending on well water for their drinking and cooking purposes," he said.

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