Bharatiya Janata Party chief Amit Shah on Sunday alleged that “politics of violence” is in the nature of the Communists as he led a march to the Communist Party of India-Marxist office in New Delhi over political killings in Kerala which was criticised by the Left party.
Leading the ‘Jan Raksha Yatra’, the BJP’s ongoing campaign to highlight “Left’s atrocities” in Kerala, Shah alleged that the Left workers were killing and terrorising BJP and Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh workers in the southern state which is ruled by the CPI-M-led government.
Shah led the march from central Delhi’s Connaught Place to the CPI-M headquarters in the Gole Market area, a distance of about 1.5 kilometre. Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari, Union Minister Alphons Kannanthanam and the party’s Lok Sabha MPs from the national capital were in tow.
In his address, Shah asserted that no amount of intimidation can stop the lotus (BJP’s symbol) from blooming in the Left-ruled state.
He hit out at Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, alleging that the maximum killings of BJP and RSS workers have taken place in the latter’s home district.
“Since the Left came to power in Kerala, several workers of the BJP and Sangh have been killed. The killings are brutal, bodies are chopped into pieces. It is done to terrorise those who support the BJP that they will meet the same fate. But the more muck of murders they spread, the lotus will bloom better,” Shah said.
The BJP president took on Vijayan, saying the blame for the spate of killings falls squarely on him, considering that the maximum number of such killings have taken place in the “chief minister’s home district”.
“Politics of violence is in their (communists’) nature. It is not a coincidence that the maximum political violence is reported from West Bengal, Tripura and Kerala where the communists have been in power for long. Wherever they have been in power, they have turned the political culture into that of violence,” he said.
The ‘Jan Raksha Yatra’ was launched by Shah from Kannur district of Kerala on October 3 and it will conclude on October 17 at Thiruvananthapuram.
Soon after Shah led the march to the CPI-M office, CPI-M general secretary Sitaram Yechury addressed a press conference there, claiming that the BJP campaign was a “flop show”.
He said the BJP protest near the office of CPI-M was “unprecedented” in Indian democracy and a reflection of “tendencies of fascism” coming to the fore in Indian politics with BJP ruling at the Centre.
Responding to Shah’s charge that the Left workers were killing and terrorising BJP and RSS workers in Kerala, Yechury alleged that the Sangh was “responsible for starting political violence” in Kerala.
“The BJP president had to flee from Kerala as there was no response from the people. Here (in Delhi), he just flagged the protest march at Connaught Place but did not arrive at the (protest) meeting venue which is an indication that he himself realises that it is a flop,” Yechury said.
Factors such as “communal polarisation”, “failures” of Modi government to fulfill its promises, are the reasons behind the BJP’s protests, the CPI-M leader said.
“They (BJP) want to divert attention from the growing discontent of Indian people against Modi government’s performance in last three years. It has betrayed every single promise. The Modi government says they are the ones who are anti-corrupt. Today an exposure has come.... Is this fight against corruption,” Yechury said.
Shah also hit out at, what he called, the “champions of human rights” over their “silence” on the communist atrocities. He said their “selective protests” have exposed their bias.
He asked, “Why do they not take out any march at the India Gate against the atrocities committed by the Left?”
At the rally venue, the BJP exhibited a series of images, mainly the pictures of those killed, to highlight the “brutality” of the situation.
“The reds think they will be able to stop thoughts and ideas from spreading through violence. I want to tell the CPI-M and Congress that communists have disappeared from the world and Congress from India. And BJP, which was launched with 10 persons, is today the world’s largest party with 11 crore workers,” Shah said.
Yechury alleged that without resorting to violence and communal polarisation, the RSS and BJP can never expand their social base.
“It is this that they are seeking in northern Kerala having strong Muslim population,” the CPI-M leader alleged.
“The politics of communal polarisation has completely disrupted social harmony in the country... The private armies of ‘Gau rakashaks’ (cow vigilantes), targeting Dalits and Muslims, moral policing...this is generating discontent among the people,” he said, adding the BJP was seeking to divert public attention from it through the campaign.
Referring to today’s BJP march to the CPI-M office, Yechury said, “We are not going to be cowed down by these sort of threats and will raise democratically our voice against their violence, communal polarisation and anarchy.”
Image: BJP President Amit Shah addresses party workers during the Jan Raksha Yatra in New Delhi on Sunday. Photograph: Vijay Verma/PTI Photo