Arvind Kejriwal’s situation a life lesson for Congress, says Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan

Pinarayi Vijayan says INDIA bloc’s rally in Delhi on March 31 is ‘a huge success and a strong warning to BJP-led NDA government’ at the Centre

April 01, 2024 12:42 pm | Updated 12:42 pm IST - Kozhikode

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan addressing the media in Kozhikode on April 1, 2024.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan addressing the media in Kozhikode on April 1, 2024. | Photo Credit: K. Ragesh

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has called upon the Indian National Congress to take in a lesson from the situation being faced by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

While maintaining that the rally of the INDIA bloc in Delhi on March 31 was “a huge success and a strong warning to the Bharatiya Janata Party-led NDA government” at the Centre, Mr. Vijayan said the attitude of the Congress towards the BJP’s deliberate attacks on non-congress Opposition party leaders was not right.

“The Congress was the first to file a police complaint against the alleged liquor licence corruption in the Delhi government. The Enforcement Directorate [ED] capitalised on it. When Minister Manish Sisodia was arrested, the Congress asked why Kejriwal was not arrested,” Mr. Vijayan told reporters in Kozhikode on April 1 (Monday).

He recalled Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s recent comment that several Congress leaders were threatened with jail terms to lure them into the BJP.

“You will have to face several adversities in politics. Giving up politics is not the solution. You should fight against the adversities. The Congress leaders’ forced migration to the BJP cannot be justified,” he said, adding that Mr. Kejriwal’s experience was “a huge life lesson” for the Congress which should learn to “prioritise the nation’s interest” while making decisions.

Criticising the BJP government for “diluting the Constitutional values and secular values” of the country over its 10 years in power and trying to implement the “RSS’s displeasure over the idea of secularism”, Mr. Vijayan said secularism can be protected only by opposing communalism.

Pointing out the pitfalls in the implementation of the National Citizenship Register (NCR) in Assam, he criticised Rahul Gandhi for not mentioning the issue in his Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra. “The NCR was targeted at the Muslims. But it affected all, because not even people in educated Kerala have the birth details of their fathers and grandfathers recorded”, he said.

Rahul’s Wayanad candidature slammed

Mr. Vijayan also criticised Mr. Gandhi for contesting from the Wayanad constituency against CPI leader Annie Raja in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. “What is the justification for contesting against a party that is your fellow traveller in the INDIA bloc? Why not contest against the BJP directly?” he asked.

Responding to a query on the acquittal of the accused in the Kasaragod Mohammad Riyas Moulavi murder case recently, the Chief Minister said the investigation by the special investigation team (SIT) was “foolproof” and that the special public prosecutors, advocate Ashokan initially and then advocate T. Saddique, were appointed based on written requests from Moulavi’s wife.

“All the accused were nabbed within three days and the chargesheet was submitted in 85 days. The accused spent 7 years in remand and their bail attempts were denied repeatedly due to the efficient work carried out by the prosecution. The prosecution and the SIT performed their duties sincerely and with complete transparency. Even Moulavis’ family had no complaints”, the Chief Minister said.

“The government is duty-bound to ensure the right punishment to the killers of Moulavi, especially since their intention was to create a communal strife,” he said, adding that the confusions being created now are part of “the attempts to tarnish the image of the State government.”

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