Kochi: The BJP in Kerala has found an opportunity to fish in the troubled waters with the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) demanding from its alliance partner Congress a third seat to contest in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. The saffron party accused the Congress of planning to give in to the IUML’s demand and termed the move suicidal.
“There are hints that the Congress is planning to surrender to the IUML’s demand by relinquishing the Kannur seat held by Congress’ state chief (K Sudhakaran). Of course it’s their politics. But such a move is suicidal. Both the Congress leaders and followers should think over whether bowing down before communal forces should help the party or not,” BJP state spokesperson KVS Haridas told reporters here.
The BJP’s response comes following reports that the IUML has placed its demand for a third seat at the initial round of bilateral talks with the Congress. The Congress leadership has not taken any decision on it yet. Sudhakaran who represents the Kannur constituency has already announced that he will not be seeking re-election.
The BJP pitched it as a national political issue by connecting it with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s political survival.
“Rahul contested the 2019 election from Wayanad under the IUML flags. Now the Congress assessment is that there is no other safe seat for him in the country. He doesn’t have the courage to contest from even Karnataka or Telangana where the Congress is in power. He can see the Lok Sabha again only at the mercy of the Muslim League,” Haridas said.
He said the Congress followers have started thinking about how long can the party survive by succumbing to the pressure tactics of the communal forces. He said thousands of Congress supporters have been joining the BJP during the Kerala Padayatra being carried out by BJP state president K Surendran. “When the yatra reaches Ernakulam on February 24, over 1,000 people would join the BJP. It shows the Hindus in Congress have realised the truth,” Haridas said.
He also slammed the Congress leadership in Kerala for taking a stand against the idol consecration ceremony at the Ram temple of Ayodhya.