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Twin objectives power BJP's renewed affinity for PC George

Party aims to bring George’s controversial remarks to the centre of public debate and reach out to a leader who boasts of having good connections with the Church 

Published: 02nd May 2022 02:17 AM  |   Last Updated: 02nd May 2022 10:25 AM   |  A+A-

PC George ( File Photo |EPS)

PC George ( File Photo |EPS)

Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The BJP rallying firmly behind the controversial Kerala Janapaksham (Secular) leader PC George in the anti-Muslim hate speech episode is seen as the saffron party’s political strategy with twin objectives.

While once again bringing George’s controversial remarks with high polarisation potential to the centre of public debate in the coming days, the saffron party has also managed to reach out to a leader who boasts of having good connections with the church in central Kerala. 

Building a good rapport with the Christian community and the church has been the BJP national leadership's diktat to the state unit ahead of recent elections. But despite many efforts, the state unit has not been able to show considerable results on that front. 

For the BJP, George is the best bet available to reach out to a section of the Christian community and to also rake up highly controversial issues which other politicians would think twice about. 

The former Poonjar MLA has been one of the fiercest voices against 'love jihad', another pet topic of the BJP, which had found support from a considerable section of Christians. This has also made many observers suspect whether George choosing a programme organised by a Sangh Parivar-affiliated organisation to deliver the hate speech against the Muslim community was part of a larger plan.

"With George and other radical Christian groups like CASA coming closer to the BJP, the traditional Hindu-Muslim approach adopted by the BJP would eventually change into a Muslim - non-Muslim equation," opined advocate and political observer A Jayashankar.

He added that a sizeable section in the Christian community subscribes to George’s radical views and BJP would be eyeing this section to broaden its base. 

Meanwhile, the BJP has chosen to approach its newfound association with George in a cautious manner. Instead of openly endorsing George's anti-Muslim hate speech, the party chose to play the 'protector' of a Christian leader who was being hounded by Islamic fundamentalists and Marxists for his 'plainspeak'.

Union Minster and BJP senior leader V Muraleedharan, while rushing to meet George at the police camp, was careful not to endorse his hate speech but attacked the LDF government for condoning utterances by ‘anti-national’ forces.

"The BJP may find its re-association with George lucrative. But the inconsistent political stance adopted by him over the years and his unsuccessful attempts to curry favour with both LDF and UDF, should be taken note of. Apart from highly controversial statements, one doubts whether he still has the clout that can bring any electoral dividends from the Christian belt," said Joseph C Mathew, a political observer. 

Arrest drama was to hoodwink public: IUML

KOZHIKODE: Terming the arrest of former MLA PC George as part of a well-scripted drama by the government, IUML acting state general secretary PMA Salam told reporters here on Sunday that the absence of the public prosecutor at the court when George was produced before the magistrate establishes the pretence of the government's action.

"It is not enough to register a case under non-bailable sections of the IPC. Someone should be present at the court on behalf of the government to argue that bail should not be given. The drama was staged to hoodwink the public," he said.



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