Thiruvananthapuram: Veteran communist leader and former Kerala Chief Minister V S Achutanandan said that before endeavouring to protect Sabarimala, the 4-member BJP panel appointed by their national president, Amit Shah, should first examine whether that political party had delivered on its Clean Ganga promise.

In a statement he said that saving the Ganga was a stated promise in the election manifesto of BJP. But yielding to intimidation by corporates, the central government is on the path of destroying the river.

This visit to Sabarimala is the latest example in a litany of lies peddled to fool the public. More than protecting Sabarimala, Amit Shah seems to have deputed the team to resolve the factionalism that has riven that party here. They are laboring under a delusion, if they assume that through such spectacles foisted upon Kerala, the BJP would be able to camouflage the corrupt anti-people policies of the central government.

In context, the weekend edition of Mathrubhumi dated December 2, 2018 had featured an article written by Magsaysay award winner, Dr. Sandeep Pandey on how the callous disregard shown by the Modi-led government towards the Gandhian fast by legendary Professor Guru Das Agrawal had led to the latter’s death.

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To quote Dr. Pandey: It may be intriguing why the government, which rode to power on a Hindutva agenda, did not listen to a Hindu saint, which he had become in 2011, at the age of 79 years, on an issue of ecological and religious significance of Ganga, which was at the core of Prime Minister's election campaign. Swami Gyan Swaroop Sanand, as Professor G.D. Agrawal was now known, had put forward a draft for National River Ganga ji (Conservation and Management) Act in 2012.

Professor Agrawal also fasted five times during the United Progressive Alliance regime. However, he never faced a threat to his life. The only time he fasted during the National Democratic Alliance government's tenure it proved fatal for him. This also demonstrates that the development paradigm is not sensitive to socio-cultural issues, including religion, or environmental issues, in spite of the PM having won a United Nations award, and is more brazenly pro-corporate and less humane under the present government.