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  Opinion   Edit  20 May 2024  AA Edit | Parties compete to breach code

AA Edit | Parties compete to breach code

THE ASIAN AGE.
Published : May 21, 2024, 12:05 am IST
Updated : May 21, 2024, 12:05 am IST

Modi alleges Mamata Banerjee appeases Muslim hardliners, sparking controversy over religious organisations' involvement in politics

Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses at a public meeting for Lok Sabha elections, in Purulia, Sunday, May 19, 2024. (PTI Photo)
 Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses at a public meeting for Lok Sabha elections, in Purulia, Sunday, May 19, 2024. (PTI Photo)

Political parties appear to be in a competition not just to beat one another but also to breach some of the revered conventions, also mandate by the law, while they go about campaigning in the ongoing general elections. And it is led by, sadly, none lesser than Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his party, the BJP.

The latest attempt to communalise every statement made by his opponents is Mr Modi’s allegation that Trinamul Congress leader and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was ‘defaming and threatening’ Hindu religious organisations — Iskcon, Ramakrishna Mission and Bharat Sevashram Sangha — and their monks “under the pressure of Muslim hardliners” to appease her vote bank in the Lok Sabha elections.

Mr Modi was responding to the charge Ms Banerjee levelled against some individuals within those organisations that they were siding with the saffron party; she would want them to be apolitical. Given the way these organisations are respected across communities all over the world, Ms Benerjee could have avoided dragging the organisations into the discussion; she could have taken up the issues with their leadership, which have refused to identify with political parties despite prodding. She, still, has a point in demanding that religious organisations and their members keep off politics.

On his part, Mr Modi has invented an effort on the part of Ms Banerjee to appease the Muslims in her criticism of the monks. The Prime Minister who himself admitted that he would disqualify himself from being in politics the moment he would play the Hindu-Muslim card now misses no chance to see an ‘appeasement’ angle in every sentence opposition leaders speak and every scheme they announce. 

Political expediency, especially in the time of elections, appears to have got the better of the Prime Minister who has a duty to walk his talk. He does not add to the glory of the position he holds or of his party by playing the card which he claims he abhors.

 

 

Tags: aa edit, prime minister narendra modi, cm mamata banerjee, 2024 lok sabha elections