When it comes to political shrewdness, no party can beat the BJP. The BJP in Goa has requested the Election Commission to involve the local church in spreading awareness about curbing malpractices during polls.
A BJP party delegation led by its State unit chief Laxmikant Parsekar on Wednesday met Chief Election Commissioner S.Y. Quraishi, while he was in Panaji, to make this demand apart from raising other election-related issues. “We have requested the EC to actively involve the church in spreading awareness about malpractices during election,” State BJP general secretary Wilfred Mesquita told reporters later.
While many eyebrows were raised over the new-found love of the saffron party towards the church, senior scribes journalists saw it as BJP's subtle way to counter Catholic establishment's traditional soft-corner to the Congress in elections. The BJP's major thrust during election campaign would be on corruption and malpractices by Congressmen in government as well as in the elections. Among its strategies, firstly, it would keep many of the “politically-active” clergy across the State busy in a noble task, leaving them no time to participate in subtle election canvassing for their “Congress-favourites.” Secondly, should the church openly campaign against election malpractices, its vote-catching value for the “secular Congress” would be obviously be diminished as maximum Ministers and leaders of the ruling Congress alliance attract allegations of corruption and election malpractices. Thirdly, the BJP sees this as yet another way to warm the hearts of Catholics by its noble gesture towards the church.