R. Sankar Statue Hullabaloo and Kerala’s Clandestine Politics

By Prof. C.I.Issac published on December 18, 2015


Kerala’s political affairs for the last two decades are running on the rails of controversies, scoops of mysteries and scams. It is an unending, frequent and enduring phenomenon of the ‘God’s Own Country’s’ political contours. By which tent managers of Kerala Political Circus are effectively shifts the masse’s (voter’s) attention from vital issues of the state. That political Front comes victorious which will create an effective controversy on the eve months of voting days becomes the winner of the election. For the last five years United Democratic Front (UDF), present day reigning Party of Kerala, now entered in the final round of the election scenario. This ruling Front of Kerala had underwent to several such controversies and they survived every allegations by means of creating a new one or counter movement and shifting the focus of media and men to new one. The last such one was the convicted criminal’s revelation cum threat of the release of CD’s which contained of sexual relations with the notorious ‘solar’ fraudulent lady by MLAs, Cabinet Ministers and Chief Minister. It turned as a death-bell to the sinking ship of UDF which nearing it term and yet to face another election.  Now Kerala as a whole is nearing to another election. In the light of it, the ruling Front which is now subjected to the said sex scandal is waiting to escape from this ‘padmavieham’. By the virtue of luck the UDF got the straw of R. Sanker’s statue unveiling ceremony as a wind fall opportunity in the political gambling of Kerala. Now the entire focus of Kerala shifted towards Statue unveiling.

UDF and LDF are together striving to neutralize the recently successfully concluded Jana Munneetta yatra under the leadership of SNDP leader Vellappally Natesan on behalf of the ever marginalizing Hindu society of Kerala. The LDF and UDF are in union, by ignoring all their political differences, since the Yatra begun, to think of pounding out the impact of the Jana Munneetta yatra. The first outcome was the distortion of Vellappally Natesan’s protest against the government’s religion based and discriminatory disaster relief policy. Natesan said there was religion based discrimination from the part of the government in distributing disaster reliefs. Further he said ‘only Muslims get due assistance from the government when they die in disaster’ and “one should die as a Muslim to get benefits from government”. The government had registered a police case against him under the sections of inciting communal hatred provisions for the above said statement. As a precaution Natesan reserved his earlier invitation to Chief Minister in the proposed statue unveiling programme. Natesan doubted that at the last minute Chief Minister himself may announce that he could not share the dais with a person charged with communal hatred. Such a withdrawal, no doubt, will fade gleam of the already concluded Yatra. The wise and insightful SNDP leader smells out the rat and he down in all the political fronts in doldrums. In an earlier occasion LDF chief minister E. K. Nayanar boycotted at the last minute of A.B. Vajpayee’s function of inauguration of the State sponsored Kudumbasree (women empowerment programme) programme on 17.05.1998. Anyhow Natesan averted such a repetition of history.

It is necessary to say a few words about the Congress leader of Kerala, R. Sankar (1909-1972). He was not a conventional Chief Minister of Kerala and was a man above corruption, scandal and nepotism. His tenure, as CM of Kerala (1962-1964), turned down as an eyesore to the Catholic Church of Kerala, who mastermind behind the notorious liberation agitation against first elected E. M. Sankaran Namboothirippad’s government. In R. Sankar’s cabinet (1962-1964) a Catholic Church Icon handled the portfolio of home.  He was the Church’s nominee to the office of the CM. It is said that then high-command was well aware of the weakness of the Icon. During the good old days of the Congress party, they followed the policy of “Make the state look above suspicion”. Hence they preferred R. Sankar as the CM of Kerala. Thus the Church and the honourable Church Icon began to haunt Sankar and the Congress Party. It finally ended in the birth of Kerala Congress.

Thus the first parting of the ways was witnessed by the Congress Party; later it turned as a common jargon of the Party. Thus the age-old Catholic Ezhava wedlock started from the days of Nivarthana (Abstention Movement of Travancore 1933-1937) agitation of Travancore ended as a tragedy. (Abstention Movement was the handiwork of the Church that aimed to widen the gulf between Nairs and Ezhavas along with the slander of the popularity of Diwan Sir C. P. Rama Swami Iyer, who was responsible for the historic Temple Entry Proclamation. By this proclamation Church’s opportunity to enhance its frontiers of Christendom in Kerala ended). Nevertheless in the mean time, Church’s Icon lost his public image and caught in red hand by the public in doubtful circumstances in the wee hours of the day along with ‘social lady’ when the state car which was driven by the home minister himself met an accident and R. Sankar, the last of the idealistic tradition of the Congress Party, removed him from the cabinet with in twenty four hours of the incident. Hence Sankar “Cleaned the Augean Stables”. In a retaliatory move the Church cultivated anti-Ezhava sentiment amongst it laity.  Thereupon the Catholic Church parted the way with the Congress and gave birth to Kerala Congress.

Later on Congress and Kerala Congress are joined together and formed UDF. This new coalition widely opened the corridors of the Congress Party for the Catholic Church and furthermore, the ascendency of Sonia turned as a blessing in disguise to the Catholic Church all over India and it provided an upper hand to the Church in the All India Congress Party. Hence the Church ‘regained the lost paradise’ of power politics in Kerala and rest of India once again.

Now, both Fronts of Kerala are afraid of the victory of the BJP-SNDP led Hindu political Front in the forthcoming Kerala Legislative Assembly elections.  In such a situation survival of the both fronts are challenging questions to the respective. So the question of avoidance of Chief Minister of Kerala by SNDP from their private congregation of unveiling ceremony of the statue of R. Sankar as burning issue is their dire need of the hour. It is interesting to see that the government and opposition front of Kerala maintained certain extend of pre-conceived reservations from the very beginning of Modi government.  The only one Chief Minister who abstained from the oath taking ceremony of Narendra Modi was Oommen Chandy, the Kerala CM. At the same time the paradox is that the same CM who abstained from the oath of office of Indian Prime Minister did not forget to enriched with his presence in the oath taking ceremony of UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav. Similarly the Chief Minister of Kerala deliberately avoided the PM of India from foundation stone laying ceremony of Vizhanjam Port. Vizhinjam port was the fifty years old dream of the people of Kerala. In front of the Congress governments of Delhi, the demand of the people of Kerala for the port was remained as a crying in the wilderness for the last fifty years. The long cherished dream of the people of Kerala was fulfilled by Narendra Modi. Above all the present government at New Delhi made lavish financial aid to fulfill the long cherished dream of the people of Kerala. Thus now we can call the government of Kerala for its lapse of avoiding Prime Minister of India from the inauguration of the work of the new port as a mark of ingratitude. Thus one can depict Kerala government as the synonym to ‘ingratitude’.

In the light of the above stated facts and figures let readers to judge who is the villain of Kerala.

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