Threat against Kerala CM puts RSS on defensive

Report by: 
P. Sreekumaran
Thiruvananthapuram
5 Mar 2017

The death threat issued by an RSS leader in Madhya Pradesh against Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan is set to escalate the ongoing tension between the RSS-BJP and the CPM in Kerala.
An immediate fallout of the incident will be a setback to the efforts being made to put an end to the cycle of violence between the two sides ever since the LDF Government assumed power in the state.
RSS leader Kundan Chandrawat’s hate speech in which he announced a bounty of  Rs one crore for anyone “who beheads Pinarayi Vijayan and brings his head to me” has exposed, once again, the fascist character of the organization which time and again betrays its intolerant mindset against political rivals.
True, following the strong reaction from various parties, the RSS and BJP have officially dissociated themselves from Chandrawat’s speech. But the damage has already been done.
In a prompt reaction, CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury has tweeted that Chandrawat’s speech reveals the true colour of the RSS as a terrorist outfit. He also questioned the silence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the NDA Government at the Centre over the remarks.
What has made the threat especially sinister is that it was made in the presence of a BJP MP and a party MLA.  Yechury has also demanded immediate arrest of Chandrawat and slapping of UAPA on him.
The response of Kerala BJP leaders has been predictable. Normally quick to respond to any happening in the state, the BJP leaders in the State have failed to condemn the incident.
Needless to say, the incident will further set back   efforts of the RSS-BJP in strike deeper roots in the state.
It has caused utmost concern among the minorities, especially the Muslims and Christians. It may be mentioned that the BJP leaders have been making, of late, concerted efforts to cosy up to the Christian community in Central Kerala, the weak spot of the party. The BJP knows well that, if their plan to emerge as a viable third force in the strictly bipolar state is to succeed, it must build bridges of understanding with the Christian community in the central districts.
But the Chandrawat episode has dealt a severe blow to the party’s game plan. In the wake of the threat against the Kerala CM, Christians, especially the Kerala Congress (M) will think twice before having a truck with the RSS-BJP.
That said, it must also be noted that the sinister incident should occasion self-introspection among the state CPM leaders as well. Though they may deny it, the fact is ever since the Pinarayi government came to power, there has been an increase in the clashes between the RSS-BJP and CPM.
The LDF Government led by the CPM must, therefore, take immediate steps to rein in the hotheads in the party who lose no opportunity to indulge in the politics of violence against political rivals. A firm commitment from the CPM state leaders renouncing the politics of murder will go a long way in restoring peace, forcing the RSS-BJP combine to return the compliments, too. Are the CPM leaders listening?   (IPA)