Palakkad: The BJP survived a scare of losing the only civic body it rules in Kerala as a no-confidence motion by the UDF in the Palakkad municipal corporation failed on Monday by one vote, courtesy the dramatic exit of a member of the Opposition front led by the Congress.
The UDF got 26 votes in place of 27 that was required for the BJP administration to fall.
A couple of hours before the councillors were to meet, Congress member V Saravanan handed over his resignation to the party secretary. That made it clear the ruling front was to scrape through the test in which the BJP councillors were asked by the party chief whip to abstain from voting.
The CPM hadn’t announced its plan, but the Left members were set to vote in support of the no-trust motion.
The municipal corporation has 52 members of whom all but one were eligible for voting. K Saidalavi, an independent councillor, is fighting a legal case regarding his election and hence couldn't exercise franchise.
The BJP has 24 members, while the Congress has 13, Muslim League 4, CPM 9 and the Welfare Party 1 besides the sole independent. The present civic body was formed after the civic polls in November 2015.