Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday took a swipe at BJP’s attempt to woo Hindu Ezhava community in poll-bound Kerala, saying “the communal ideologies and individuals were trying to capture the legacy of Sree Narayana Guru”, a social reformer from the Ezhava caste.
Sonia was speaking at the inauguration of the 83rd annual pilgrimage at Sivagiri mutt, the spiritual centre of Ezhava community. Two weeks ago, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had visited the mutt.
“I believe that there can be no greater betrayal of Sree Narayana Guru than the attempts being made to capture his legacy by communal ideologies and individuals whose sole motive is to get political power by dividing our society,’’ she said, without naming the BJP, which has been trying to win over the Ezhava community by forging an alliance with Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana (SNDP) Yogam, led by Vellappally Natesan.
Sonia said that Guru’s principles of equality, liberty and social justice are more relevant than ever before. The Congress president also lauded the efforts of SNDP Yogam in the uplift of the weaker sections of the society and leading a social, educational transformation in Kerala.
However, she took a dig at the present leadership of the SNDP Yogam, which is close to the BJP. Without naming Natesan, she said: “It would be a complete negation of Guru’s principles if the Yogam is used in the pursuit of political gains of a few.’’
Interestingly, BJP leaders were not present at the event, despite the party’s alliance with SNDP Yogam. The mutt is divided over SNDP Yogam’s political alliance with the BJP, which is one of the factors that kept BJP leaders away from the event.