Union Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan on Thursday clarified that the Bharatiya Janata Party has not yet decided to nominate former Delhi Metro chief E Sreedharan, popularly known as 'Metro Man', as the chief ministerial candidate of the party for the upcoming Kerala assembly polls.
Speaking to ANI, Muraleedharan said: "There were some statements that E Sreedharan will be CM candidate in Kerala. I heard media reports that the party has announced him as the CM candidate.
"After I talked to the party president he said that he hasn't made any statement and he was only referring to some issue in Kerala, So it should not be considered as an announcement, I m clarifying it," he added.
Earlier in the day, Muraleedharan told ANI that Sreedharan would be the party’s chief ministerial candidate.
Prior to that, Kerala BJP chief K Surendran had said that the face of the state can be changed if Sreedharan was made CM of the state.
"If Metro Man becomes the chief minister, the face of Kerala can be changed," Surendran told ANI.
Former Delhi Metro chief E Sreedharan formally joined the Bharatiya Janata Party in Malappuram on February 25 in the presence of Union minister RK Singh, during the BJP's ongoing Vijaya Yatra led by Surendran.
Meanwhile, the curtains came down on his 24-year long career with the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation as he wore the DMRC's outdoor uniform one last time on Thursday ahead of his political journey with BJP.
"This will be the last day I will be wearing this uniform," Sreedharan, acclaimed for his efficiency in completing big infrastructure projects, said announcing the completion of re-construction of Palarivattom flyover under his supervision much ahead of the stipulated time.
Clad in the DMRC outdoor uniform, the technocrat visited the flyover in the morning for an inspection before handing it over to the Roads and Bridges Development Corporation of the Kerala government for inauguration.
He said the flyover, whose reconstruction was taken up in September last year, was ready and the state government can decide the date of its inauguration.
"I wore the DMRC's typical outdoor uniform for the first time in November 1997 in Delhi. Same practice I continued for the last 24 years," Sreedharan said.
The 'Metro Man', who is all set to contest the assembly polls on the BJP ticket, said he will file the nomination papers after resigning from the post of DMRC's principal adviser.
Sreedharan, now a member of the BJP state Election Committee, said he has requested the party leadership to field him from a constituency not far from his residence in Ponnani in Malappuram district.
Predicting a big victory for the BJP in the polls, the technocrat said his poll campaign style will be different from that of a normal politician.
"This is a digital age. So I will not be going from house to house or shop to shop (seeking votes). But I will reach every home, every person in the constituency with a message -- what I am doing for the state," he said.
Sreedharan said he will showcase his professional competency and integrity among the voters for winning their support.
He said his age has not affected his health.
"Mentally I am very strong. I will not be working like a normal politician. I will still be working like a technocrat," Sreedharan said in response to a query on his age.
Sreedharan expressed confidence BJP will form the government in the state after the polls.
"People know very well what is good for them and what is good for the state. I am very confident that they will elect the BJP to power," he added.