A day after BJP president Amit Shah launched a padayatra against political violence in the Left-dominated regions in Kerala, UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Wednesday raked up the issue of “love jihad” and said the soil of Kerala is set to turn into the “soil of saffron and nationalism”.
“CPM says this soil is red because it is blood-soaked. But it will not last like this. I am telling you this soil will turn into soil of saffron and nationalism,” Adityanath said at a rally in Kannur on the second day of BJP’s fortnight-long padayatra.
Referring to “love jihad” — the alleged trend of Muslim boys tricking girls from other religions into marriage — Adityanath said the Left government in Kerala has not taken effective measures to contain it.
“The High Court in the state had given instructions to the state. Now the Supreme Court too has observed through various judgments that love jihad exists in Kerala and Karnataka,” Adityanath said, adding, “Kerala (government) has not taken any effective measure to contain it.”
“Now let NIA probe it. Doodh ka doodh, paani ka paani hone do (Let the truth come out),” Adityanath said during the padayatra.
He asserted that the communists were set to be wiped out from Kerala in the face of BJP’s political challenge.
“Kannur in Malayalam means land of tears. But I warn you that in the coming days it will be the CPM that will have to shed tears because they are going to be defeated,” Yogi said at a public meeting Wednesday evening.
Adityanath, who started his address by referring to Sabarimala and Padmanabhaswany temples, accused the ruling Left of trying to make Kerala a hub of “jihadi terrorism”.
“Violence has no place in democracy. If CPM believes in democracy, it has to answer to these murders. Democracy is about discussions and consensus…They raise slogans of secularism. But in the guise of secularism, they are trying to make this state a hub of Jihadi terrorism,” Adityanath said at the public meeting at the end of the padayatra. “But BJP will not let it happen. We have to strengthen our fight against such jihadi activism.”
Addressing the public meeting, BJP general secretary Arun Singh alleged that the political violence and the murders in the region were backed by the CPM government. “BJP workers in the state will be supported by party workers across the country,” Singh said.
Adityanath is one of the top leaders the BJP leadership has decided to field during the padayatra. MP CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan and his Maharashtra and Goa counterparts Devendra Fadnavis and Manohar Parrikar, respectively, Union Ministers Ananth Kumar, Smriti Irani, Dharmendra Pradhan, Narendra Tomar, Mahesh Sharma and V K Singh are among the other leaders expected to participate in the yatra.
While the BJP has been a marginal political player in Kerala, RSS has had deeper presence in the state. With the BJP in power at the Centre now, RSS is learnt to have been nudging it to raise the stakes in Kerala in a bid to expand its presence. In fact, the latest missive for this is learnt to have come to the BJP early in August.
BJP sources revealed that BJP’s offensive against the Left government in Kerala was firmed up during a coordination meeting of top RSS functionaries — general secretary Bhaiyyaji Joshi, joint general secretaries Krishna Gopal and Dattatreya Hosabale — with BJP president Amit Shah during the monsoon session of Parliament.
During the meeting, the RSS leaders are learnt to have impressed upon the BJP chief to raise their political pitch against the “samyawadi, asahishnu shaktiyon” (communist and intolerant forces) in Kerala.