FANNING the growing Islamophobia among Christians in Kerala, a Catholic bishop has said that there is an organised “narcotic jihad” targeting non-Muslims.
In his address to the faithful at Marth Mariam Pilgrim Church at Kuravilangad in Kottayam district on Wednesday, Palai bishop Joseph Kallarangatt claimed that there are two types of jihad – “love jihad and narcotic jihad”.
“The narcotic jihad is the activity of spoiling the life of non-Muslims, particularly youths, by making them addicted to drugs,” the bishop said. “Various types of drugs are being used in ice-cream parlours, hotels and juice corners run by hardcore jihadis. They are using various types of drugs as a weapon to spoil non-Muslims.”
“The rave parties, which promote use of narcotics, and the drugs being seized from such events have presented this fact before us. We see a lot of people among us who lost their jobs or abandoned studies after they became drug addicts,’’ said the bishop.
The bishop said the youths in Kerala are facing an unprecedented crisis. The most important issues are love jihad and narcotic jihad.
“In a democratic country like ours, jihadis have realised that they cannot destroy other communities by using arms. The jihadis are using other weapons which cannot be identified easily by others,” he said.
“In the perspective of jihadis, non-Muslims have to be annihilated. When the agenda is spreading religion and eradication of non-Muslims, the ways for attaining that agenda get manifested in different manners. The love jihad and narcotic jihad are two such ways,” said the bishop.
The bishop’s remarks evoked protests from various Muslim organisations. Samastha Kerala Sunni Students Federation state general secretary Sathar Panthaloor said the remarks were unexpected from a bishop. He should reveal the evidence behind the allegation, he said.
Popular Front of India Kottayam district president Suneer Moulavi said the bishop’s claims were aimed at communal polarisation.