Thiruvananthapuram — BJP Kerala unit president V Muraleedharan, the young face of the State BJP who was the former national general secretary of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad and former RSS pracharak for several years after resigning from State government service, spoke to सिर्फ़ NEWS before the yatra he is undertaking in the CPI(M)-dominated villages of northern Kerala, which is to commence on 23 September and culminate on the 25th. Our correspondent Arun Lakshman spoke to him.
What does the BJP intend to project while undertaking this yatra in the CPI(M) stronghold of northern Kerala where you are alleging that the communists are not allowing any other political party to function?
The BJP is undertaking two yatras — one led by me from Kasargod to Kannur through the CPI(M) strongholds and the other undertaken by the party former State president and national executive member PK Krishnadas from Qulandi in Kozhikode district to Kannur through the CPI(M)-controlled areas. Through these yatras, we intend to project the lack of development in these CPI(M)-strongholds where the party is ruling the village panchayats, block panchayats and district panchayats and almost all the legislators are from the CPI(M). Here the CPI(M) is not allowing anyone else to function — I mean, any other political party to function — and if there is no freedom to conduct political activity, how can opposing ideologies work among the people? The CPI(M)-led panchayat members are not undertaking any development work, and to cover up this lack of development initiatives, the party is resorting to violence and this is resulting in political killings and murders. So for this we need peace, and the BJP is sending a strong message to these CPI(M) strongholds that we intend to work among the people for the betterment of their lives and this is what we would like to achieve during this yatra.
Recently CPI(M) has again resorted to murder politics in Kannur by killing RSS district leader Manoj, your comment on this?
This is what I have earlier said. The CPI(M) is not in a mood to introspect and their total failure on all fronts is being covered up by such political killings and heinous crimes like maiming and killing political opponents. The CPI(M) is not allowing any other political party to function in their strongholds. They won’t allow anyone to leave the party. The brutal assassination of former CPI(M) leader TP Chandrashekaran 2 years ago is such a crime perpetrated by the CPI(M) to give a strong message to all those who intend to leave the party on ideological differences as to what is in store for them. The ghastly and gory killing of Manoj is also such a measure undertaken by the CPI(M) to finish off its political opponents. We undertake this yatra to speak to the people directly on why the CPI(M) is indulging in such ghastly crimes.
The BJP national president on his last visit to Kerala has spoken about the party concentrating more on the next local body elections which is to take place in October 2015. What are the plans the party is formulating for this?
The BJP is preparing a draft paper regarding the next panchayat elections and we would be submitting a clearer vision on this to the national president while he visits the State in the near future. The BJP has already done a lot of ground work to concentrate on panchayats, municipalities and corporations where the party can develop its position. We are certain of winning several panchayats in the State in the next local body elections.
The Muslim community seems to have voted in favour of the BJP in the by-elections in West Bengal where the party wrested Basirhat Dakshin from the CPI(M); the Muslims have a major base in this constituency. Do you feel that the Muslims in Kerala will also emulate their brethren in Bengal?
I don’t think so. The Muslims in Kerala are not marginalised and they are enjoying political power and other benefits in the State. There is no comparison between the Muslims of Kerala and those of Bengal; maybe the Muslims of Bengal have supported the BJP candidate in West Bengal owing to the fact that they haven’t received any benefits from the parties which have ruled Bengal. This is not the situation in Kerala and the Muslims are very unlikely to support the BJP here.
The BJP Kerala unit has conducted a major programme in New Delhi on the 152nd birth celebrations of Dalit leader Mahatma Ayyankali, which was inaugurated by Prime Minister; you presided over it. It seems that you are wooing the Dalits of Kerala.
We are not wooing the Dalit community. In fact, we are standing up for their rights and demands of Dalits in the State that seems to have forgotten the community. The BJP is for development of the marginalised communities among the majority Hindu community in all fronts of life. This includes the Dalits, Ezhavas, Thiyyas, Dheevaras and Vishwakarmas.