Kerala CM Vijayan rules out meeting of religious leaders on the line of ‘narcotic jihad’
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan ruled out a meeting of religious leaders and community leaders on Monday following the controversial statement by Bishop of Pala, Mar Joseph Kallarangatt, on “narcotic jihad”.
While giving a written response to the assembly, Vijayan said that such a meeting was not necessary in the current scenario, stressing that the community fabric of the state is very strong and no one can vitiate the atmosphere. and incite hatred.
“I do not find the need to convene such a meeting. Kerala is known for its community friendship and brotherhood and no one can shake it, ”he said.
The Congress-led opposition United Democratic Front and a section of religious leaders have been calling for meetings of all parties and religions for some time.
The CM reiterated its position that there was no need to organize a meeting to discuss a non-issue like “narcotic jihad”. Shortly after the bishop’s statement, the CM declared that the religious leader’s statement was “unfortunate and unwarranted” and that amorous jihad and narcotic jihad were not based on any statistics or facts. The bishop’s statement sparked a war of words between the state’s various communities even as opposition parties urged the government to call a multi-party meeting.
Addressing a religious ceremony in Kottayam on September 9, the bishop spoke out against a particular community, saying girls and young Catholics were the target. “Wherever guns are not used narcotics are used and Catholic girls become victims. There are groups operating in the state to support them. To understand this, you have to analyze how women of other religions ended up in ISIS camps, ”he said. The bishop was referring to the trip of 21 people, including five converts to Islam, from northern Kerala to Afghanistan in 2016.
Although there was widespread resentment about his remarks, the bishop later justified his statement in the church spokesperson “Deepika”. In an article, the bishop said pseudo-secularism would destroy the country. “Those who insist that one should not talk about the evils that plague one’s own community silently encourage such things to flourish. Instead of ignoring the warnings, attempts should be made to discuss and study these issues in order to prevent such social evils, ”he said, adding that pseudo-secularists were trying to suppress voices that signal evils. of the society. He said that if secularism remains the heart of the country, pseudo-secularism will destroy it.