Kerala Finance Minister K M Mani has resigned.
He was forced to hand in his resignation following the United Democratic Front leadership demanding the same in the wake of the Kerala High Court having made adverse remarks relating to a case in which he was accused of taking a bribe of Rs 1 lakh from a liquor baron.
The resignation came after a hectic day of parleys within the UDF in the presence of Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and other top leaders belonging to the alliance.
Mani had taken a defiant stance on Tuesday morning and his party the Kerala Congress (Mani) had even threatened to withdraw support to the UDF government if it did not back its leader.
But the UDF leadership was unitedly insistent that Mani resign as Finance Minister and the longest standing Finance Minister in Kerala history has had to bow to the wishes of his political compatriots.
Following hectic political parleys all day long in the state capital of Thiruvananthapuram, the 82-year-old Mani, also the country's longest serving legislator, addressing reporters at his official residence said that being the state's law minister too, "I have to respect the law and hence I have resigned".
"I have already informed the chief minister (Oommen Chandy) of my decision to resign. Through a special messenger, I will send my resignation to the CM," he said.
"I take this opportunity to thank the CM and all other leaders who extended support to me."
"We also wish to state that we will continue to support the United Democratic Front government," said Mani.