THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Left is not just relieved but is apparently jubilant after Governor Arif Mohammad Khan’s extraordinary press conference. The ruling front’s assessment of the presser was that it had not just fallen flat with no new explosive revelations, but instead ended up exposing the governor’s own RSS leanings.
Though naturally irked by the allegations unleashed by the governor at the press conference, the CPM leadership has, however, more or less decided not to get unduly provoked. While the UDF seems to be caught in a Catch-22 situation wherein it can neither acquiesce in nor oppose the governor, the state BJP has been reduced to the status of a mere spectator. The Congress, in fact, seems to be increasingly struggling to stay relevant in such a scenario, finding itself caught in the unsavoury crossfire between the state government and the governor. Interestingly, it was the UDF that had mounted an attack on the governor in the last assembly in 2020, even to the extent of moving a resolution that he be recalled.
Most of the allegations made by the governor were earlier made by the UDF too, and it had even approached the governor with its concerns, which later led to a slanging match between the governor and Leader of Opposition V D Satheesan. Though Khan has now endorsed these concerns by the UDF, his public declaration of his close association with the RSS has put the UDF in a tight spot. The UDF obviously would not be too eager to follow up on his allegations, with Satheesan declaring that the Opposition will not be party to the tussle.
That Khan has made public his close links with the RSS has actually turned out to be a shot in the arm for the Left that has been consistent in its accusation of the governor playing to the tune of the BJP leadership at the Centre. The only irritant for the Left leadership in the whole episode is that Khan has targeted the CM’s private secretary K K Ragesh, thereby indirectly targeting the chief minister.
This led to a slew of Left leaders immediately reacting sharply. In fact, what both the ruling and Opposition fronts were keenly watching was whether Khan would drop any indication of approaching the Centre or the president against the state. Not only did he not do so, but instead he merely reiterated that he would go to the people with evidence.
As far as the BJP leadership is concerned, the governor’s remarks on RSS would not prove helpful in the ongoing tussle, as these would only validate the LDF’s allegations that he has been targeting the Left government as per RSS diktats. However, the open endorsement by the governor could help the organisation in the long run.
BJP ‘mere spectator’
While UDF seems to be caught in a situation wherein it can neither acquiesce in nor oppose the
governor, the state BJP has been reduced to the status of a mere spectator.