A question asked in a school examination has snowballed into a controversy in Tripura ahead of the Lok Sabha election.

The BJP on Saturday lodged a strong protest with the Election Commission, accusing the State administration of bias.

The question in the recently-held Political Science test of Class XI students at the Arundhatinagar Higher Secondary School asked students to indentify the communal party among the Congress, the CPI(M), the BSP and the BJP.

“The relevant chapter in the text book approved by the Tripura Board of Secondary Education read, ‘Muslim League, Hindu Mahasabha, Shiv Sena and the Bharatiya Janata Party are the parties that were formed on [the basis of a] religion or adopting a communal line to achieve political mileage.’ It shows there is a conspiracy by the State education authorities.” A BJP delegation met Tripura Chief Electoral Officer Ashutosh Jindal to submit a letter of dissent to Chief Election Commissioner V.S. Sampath. It demanded immediate action against those responsible for publishing and approving the text as “the Election Commission had recognised the BJP for fulfilling all criteria including its secular standing.”

“We have also forwarded the complaint to BJP national president Rajnath Singh and our prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi,” the delegation stated.

The party has taken a serious view of the State administration’s alleged ploy to slap communal tag on it — a national and duly registered political party.

He said the party in its memorandum to the CEC maintained that the Tripura administration had been acting indifferently towards the BJP.