“Fearing BJP”: Pinarayi Vijayan Slams Congress Over Its Silence On Gujarat Arrests

Pinarayi Vijayan

The CPM may utilise this problem to support its assertion that the Cong is too weak-willed to oppose Hindu nationalism in the state.

Pinarayi Vijayan, the Chief Minister of Kerala and a member of the CPM Politburo, initiated an attack on the Congress on Monday over the 2002 Gujarat riots, criticising it for its “silence” following the arrest of activist Teesta Setalvad and retired DGP R B Sreekumar by the Gujarat Police a day after the Supreme Court upheld the SIT’s acquittal of the state government, which was then led by Narendra Modi, in the violence.

“The Congress could have mounted a nominal protest, at the very least. No large-scale protest is required. Why did they think otherwise? When the state of emergency was established, Sreekumar and Setalvad were taken into custody (in 1975). These detentions should be interpreted as an effort to intimidate anti-BJP groups nationwide. This is what will happen if you talk against the Parivar. In response to the Sangh Parivar’s warning, the Congress is remaining silent. Fearing the BJP, the Congress is on its knees.” He suggested that all parties that support the Congress, such as the Indian Union Muslim League, should give this some serious thought.

While the Left questioned the Gujarat Police’s action on the day of the arrests, the Congress’ response had been vigilant hours after Home Minister Amit Shah had questioned the involvement of Sreekumar and Setalvad in the claims against the Modi government for 2002.

β€œThe arrests have been reported to us. Even though the FIR registered appears to be dated June 25th, 2022, it appears to be in reference to alleged crimes of fraud and fabrication stemming from circumstances that occurred between the years immediately following 2002.” Abhishek Singhvi, a senior Congress leader, had told The Indian Express, “Furthermore, it stands to reason that the Congress as a political party cannot comment on the merits of a case with which it has no connection. We hope and trust that proper and full due process of law will be followed meticulously.”

Vijayan contrasted this assertion with the CPM’s response, which vehemently denounced Setalvad’s detention and referred to her as “an untiring advocate of human rights.” She was detained on “dubious grounds,” it added, and it sought her release.

Additionally, Vijayan claimed that the Congress sought to “forget” about the Gujarat riots. “Did the Congress ever back Zakia Jafri’s legal fight against her ex-congressman husband Ahsan Jafri, who was slain in the riots in 2002? Did Sonia Gandhi, the head of the Congress, or another Congress figure pay her a visit and offer solace following Ahsan’s passing? Sonia had been to Gujarat following the incident. Then, Sonia received advice from Congress brains not to go see Zakia. The rationale was that Hindu voters would defect from Congress. That was the Congress’ position. Rahul Gandhi led temple tours in Gujarat during the most recent Assembly elections. However, he made no mention of Jafri or the rioting,” the Kerala Chief Minister stated.

The CPM in Kerala is prepared to utilise the Gujarat riots problem to support its allegations that the Congress is too weak-kneed over Hindutva to pose a threat to the BJP, as seen by Vijayan’s statement. Through this strategy, the CPM has been attempting to win over the state’s minorities, who have historically supported the Congress.

By concentrating its attention on the Congress, Vijayan is allegedly assisting the Sangh Parivar’s objective in Kerala, according to the Congress. The attack on Rahul Gandhi’s Wayanad office by the CPM student wing SFI has also been cited by the party as evidence of this.

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