Vellappally Natesan

The new political party led by Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana (SNDP) Yogam leader Vellappally Natesan has been named Bharat Dharma Janasena, said local reports.

The name, which was supported by majority of the Yogam members, was finalised on Friday evening. The official declaration will be made on Saturday in Thiruvananthapuram, marking the end of Vellappally's "Samathva Munnetta Yathra" that started in Kasaragod on 23 November.

Vellappally is the general secretary of SNDP Yogam, which owes its allegiance to social reformer Sree Narayana Guru.

Bharat Dharma Janasena, which is created in a bid to create a third front in Kerala, not only represents the backward Ezhava community to which Vellappally belongs, but also Scheduled Castes as well, officials said.

However, Vellappally has not confirmed yet whether the new party will contest in the upcoming state assembly elections in 2016.

Many believe that the party will forge alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party, which is trying to open its account in Kerala, a state dominated by the Congress-led United Democratic Front and the CPI(M)-led Left Democratic Front.

Meanwhile, the Ezhava leader is facing probe over his controversial speech over death of an autodriver, Naushad, who died after trying to save two people trapped in a manhole in Kozhikode.

Vellappally had remarked that Naushad's family was given compensation because he was a Muslim.