Central leadership of BJP micromanages formation of new party for Christians in Kerala

By Ratheesh Ravi

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Home Minister Amit Shah | Photo: PTI

Kollam: The central leadership of the Bharatiya Janata Party is not involving its Kerala state leadership in the attempt to form an organisation of Christians in the state backed by the party.

A bishop from central Kerala met prime minister Narendra Modi and home minister Amit Shah along with leaders of the proposed political party. Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma and a Malayali bishop serving in the north-eastern states were also part of the unofficial discussions, it is learnt.

Two Malayali politicians who are now in constitutional posts have also communicated with the church leadership regarding the party formation.

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A former Kerala Congress MLA who was part of the initial discussions withdrew. Currently, the BJP has brought two former MLAs, and a senior leader who was an MP and an MLA under the Congress and Kerala Congress and a former district panchayat president on board. However, these leaders have no mass support, feels a top BJP leader. Hence, attempts to lure more small groups are underway. BJP is also trying to spread messages favourable to the national party through farmers’ organisations associated with the church.

As of now, only the Catholic church remains on the BJP radar. They hope to win their votes in the Thiruvananthapuram, Thrissur and Pathanamthitta Lok Sabha constituencies.

Parallely, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, the ideological patron of BJP, is also keeping its communication channel with the church open and robust. Their national leader Indresh Kumar has visited Kerala several times to meet church heads.

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