MALAPPURAM: The Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) has finally cancelled the US trip of its MLAs, to attend a training programme there, following pressure from various quarters. The Congress has also followed suit. The decision was taken on the basis of the silence of the US government on the Israeli action on Gaza.
Seven MLAs were selected from the state by the US consulate to attend a training programme on the federal system there and all of them have cancelled their trip.
CPM general secretary Prakash Karat asked party MLA T V Rajesh to withdraw from the trip, citing the imperialistic nature of the US. CPM independent MLA K T Jaleel also cancelled the trip. Jaleel said that he was withdrawing from the trip owing to the silent support of the US to Israel in the Gaza attack. Jaleel had criticised the IUML MLAs who were planning to go on the trip and said that their Gaza support was not sincere. The statement of Jaleel and his Facebook posts had created an uproar among the Muslim community regarding the trip of IUML MLAs. The MLAs and party leadership tried hard to justify the trip, pointing out the nature of the trip. But, finally they yielded to the pressure and declared the cancellation of the trip.
“We are taking into account the sentiments of people regarding the US trip in such a situation seriously. We have contacted the party leadership and sought their opinion on the subject. Finally, we have decided to withdraw from the trip,”, N Shamsudeen, the IUML MLA said. The Congress party has decided not to go without the MLAs from other parties in the state.
“It is not fair for the Congress MLAs to go without the other selected MLAs. We will miss a good academic opportunity by this decision. The members of the programme will meet different groups in the US, which include women and minority rights activists, and the organisations criticising the government,” V T Balram MLA said. The MLAs were selected to attend the International Visitor’s Leadership Programme planned in the US in August.