Kerala Kaumudi Online
Monday, 29 May 2023 2.50 PM IST

BJP's entanglement in 'Rubber' politics


  • The fronts are concerned about the bishop's remarks

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Thalassery Archbishop Mar Joseph Pamplany's statement that he would help the central government if the price of rubber is raised to 300, sowed the seeds for new endeavors in Kerala politics. The ruling and opposition parties are worried that this will change the equations of frontal politics in the state.

Worried about not being able to take root in Kerala, the BJP is trying to keep the Christian religious minorities close. It remains to be seen whether that dream, which did not materialize even after raising Love Jihad, will be achieved through rubber. Soon after retaining power in Tripura, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that they will also take power in Kerala. That can be read along with this. For several years, there have been constant discussions with the Kerala church leadership and the BJP central leadership. The bishop's statement in the meantime is seen by the political leaders in that way. Although the leaders point out that the bishop's words are not political, it is clear that there is politics in them. The political movement in the Lok Sabha elections in Kerala may not be as UDF and LDF think. The Catholic Congress's support for the Bishop's words should be evaluated in this context.
The rubber issue is coming before the BJP when the central leadership is ready to go to any lengths to get a Lok Sabha seat from Kerala. It is towards this goal of the BJP central leadership that the Bishop has set the bait. The opposition leader's reaction that Bishop's is an expression of emotion and the observation of the left leaders that it is impractical points to the concern whether Kerala politics will change.

The challenges the church is facing are multiple

After the BJP government came to power at the Centre, the challenges faced by the Christian community in the country are many. Violence in the name of religious conversion is the main one. The problem with the church's existence is more than that. Mainly financial crisis. The central government is creating no small obstacles to bringing in funds from abroad. Due to this, education, service activities, and hospitals are all facing crises. The church leadership held talks with the Union Ministry of Home Affairs several times to resolve the issue but to no avail. It is in this context that the church leadership in Goa and the North-Eastern states are ready to compromise with the BJP. The churches in Kerala were able to hold on because they were in a relatively better financial position. Apart from this, the Christian communities in the hilly and central Travancore regions are facing a fall in the price of rubber. They cannot continue with rubber costing Rs 220 and Rs 120. This is a problem that can be solved if the central government thinks so. This can lead to a compromise between the two sides. In Kerala, the Christian vote is crucial in Thiruvananthapuram, Pathanamthitta, Thrissur, and Kasaragod constituencies where BJP is having hope.

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