Kerala

Minority community leaders sidelined in Congress: Kodiyeri

Communist Party of India (Marxist) State secretary and Polit Bureau member Kodiyeri Balakrishnan has said Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has the same tone as that of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) leader Mohan Bhagwat.

Speaking to mediapersons here on Tuesday, Mr. Balakrishnan said the Congress could not replace the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and it had lost its secular face. He alleged that leaders belonging to minority communities were neglected and sidelined in the Congress in line with Mr. Gandhi’s speech in Jaipur calling for establishing what he called a rule of Hindus in the country after ousting the “Hindutva” government at the Centre.

Alleging that the Congress even sidelined its prominent minority faces, including Ghulam Nabi Azad, Salman Khurshid and K.V. Thomas, from the national-level leadership as part of the party’s new policy, Mr. Balakrishnan claimed this issue was being discussed widely in the Congress organisation.

Accusing the Congress of discontinuing the representation of people from minority communities in the party’s State leadership, Mr. Balakrishnan sought to know whether the move was part of the new policy announced by Mr. Gandhi in Jaipur.

“The question is whether minorities are being sidelined in the Kerala unit of the Congress as well. When K. Karunakaran became Chief Minister in 1982, A.L. Jacob was made Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee president. When A.K. Antony became Chief Minister, K. Muraleedharan was elected president. When Oommen Chandy became Chief Minister, Mullappally Ramachandran became president,” Mr. Balakrishnan said and sought to know the reason for changing that norm.

Mr. Balakrishnan asked why was the Congress unable to strongly oppose what Mr. Gandhi had said. His stance was akin to that of the RSS chief. “While the BJP says that India is a nation of Hindus. Rahul Gandhi says it is the country of Hindus. One says nation and the other says country. This is the only difference between the BJP and the Congress,” he said.

The CPI(M) leader made the statement at a press conference here two days after he told the CPI(M) Thiruvananthapuram district conference that the Congress which upheld secularism excluded minorities at the Kerala leadership of the party.

( Inputs from Press Trust of India )


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Printable version | May 22, 2022 6:28:04 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/minority-community-leaders-sidelined-in-congress-kodiyeri/article38287357.ece