Tamil Nadu

Hindutva campaign ‘unites’ other parties

The BJP’s push to mark a larger presence in the State has run into rough weather. For no fault of its Tamil Nadu unit, the party, largely due to the policies of the Centre, seems to be pushed to a tight corner in the Dravidian heartland.

Barring the AIADMK, whose leader Jayalalithaa has avoided commenting on political developments in general ever since her conviction in the disproportionate assets case, almost every other party has come out strongly against the alleged “Hindutva” policies being pursued by the Narendra Modi government.

The criticism has been to such an extent that the issue is now being viewed as a possible platform for Opposition unity.

Only last week, DMK president M. Karunanidhi advised Mr. Modi to focus on development and not sing to the tunes of the RSS and other Hindutva groups.

PMK leader S. Ramadoss, an ally of the BJP, minced no words when he wondered if the whole campaign of reconversion launched by saffron groups was the foundation being laid for a Hindu State.

Earlier this month, MDMK general secretary Vaiko, while moving out of the NDA, mounted a scathing attack on the BJP for “trying” to impose Hindi and Sanskrit in Tamil Nadu.

A similar line was taken up by VCK leader Thol Thirumavalavan who, during a protest in Chennai, said the BJP’s policies were fundamentally anti-Dalit and anti-minority and there was need for united opposition in the matter.

Congress joins bandwagon

On Saturday, the Congress too jumped on the anti-Hindutva bandwagon. TNCC president E.V.K.S. Elangovan, condemning the burning of a book written by Perumal Murugan by RSS and BJP workers, said if the BJP failed to put an end to such activities, his party would launch protests to which it would invite other political parties like the VCK.

The Left too had echoed similar views, with the CPI(M) coming out strongly in support of the author.

Double standards: BJP

Responding to the developments, BJP State organising secretary S. Mohanrajulu slammed the Tamil Nadu parties for their “double standards.” He said since these parties have run out of issues to take on the BJP, they were whipping up a non-existent issue.

“On reconversions, we have said we are against forceful conversions. This applies to conversions to all religions. Promoting Sanskrit and Hindi is not promoting a religion. The whole idea seems to be to invent excuses to corner the BJP as there is no credible criticism possible against the Centre,” he said. 

Such statements by Opposition parties would not affect the BJP’s growth in any manner, he asserted.  

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Printable version | Oct 21, 2020 7:15:02 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/hindutva-campaign-unites-other-parties/article6731130.ece

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