Kerala

Spiritual leaders should be cautious against their words causing discordance: Pinarayi Vjayan

File.   | Photo Credit: The Hindu

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Friday said spiritual leaders should be mindful of their civic obligation not to create division in society.

Pressed about Bishop of Pala, Mar Joseph Kallarangatt’s, controversial sermon on radical Islamists purportedly using narcotic drugs to corrupt Catholic and non-Muslim youth, Mr. Vijayan said, "Addiction and narcotic abuse have no particular religious hue. It affects society as a whole. Narcotic peddling has an antisocial colour. It does not have the tinge of any particular religion. All faiths preach against drug abuse.”

The Chief Minister was speaking at the routine COVID-19 press conference.

CM questions the "Narcotic Jihad" statement

Remarking that he was hearing of "narcotic jihad" for the first time, Mr. Vijayan questioned, "What did he (Bishop) mean? What is the situation that provoked the words? I have no clue. People in responsible positions should ensure that their words and deeds did not cause religious disharmony.”

Mr. Vijayan called the Bishop as an influential and learned man, who commanded respect in society, and said that such a personage should be cautious that his words do not precipitate social discordance.

During one of his sermons, the Bishop had alleged an Islamic plot to stoke substance abuse among Catholics and non-Muslims. He termed it "narcotic Jihad" along with the purported "love Jihad" lines.

Panel to examine controversial KU syllabus

When asked about the inclusion of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), idealogues Deendayal Upadhyaya, V.D. Savarkar and M.S. Golwalkar teachngs in the post-graduate syllabus of a course run by the Kannur University, the CM said, " The government is against glorifying leaders who turned their back on the Independence Movement".

However, Mr. Vijayan said the government was not averse to students critically examining ideologies that were at variance with the Left doctrine.

“The Higher Education Department has constituted an expert committee to study the matter,” he added.

Jaleel has CPI(M) backing

When asked whether the government had rebuffed Left Democratic Front (LDF) independent legislator K. T. Jaleel's "anti-corruption crusade" against Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) leader P. K. Kunhalikutty, Mr. Vijayan said,

“Jaleel is a staunch fellow traveller of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) [CPI(M)]".

Mr. Vijayan said Mr. Jaleel had clarified that the Enforcement Directorate (ED) had summoned him to investigate the money laundering charge against IUML newspaper Chandrika. He had not sought an ED investigation into the affairs at the IUML controlled A. R. Nagar Cooperative Bank.

Mr. Vijayan said the Cooperative department was competent and legally empowered to look into the allegations, and it has done so.

However, the bank had obtained a temporary stay from the High Court. He said that the government did not view the matter as a personal spat between Mr. Jaleel and Mr. Kunhalikutty.


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Printable version | Oct 26, 2021 5:00:56 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/spiritual-leaders-should-be-cautious-against-their-words-causing-discordance-pinarayi-vjayan/article36396787.ece

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