Thiruvananthapuram: Barely days after it faced
flak for displaying a painting of Jesus alongside Communist
icons at an exhibition, the CPI(M) in Kerala has landed itself
in another soup after a billboard carrying a political spoof,
allegedly put up by party workers, raised hackles here.
The board, depicting US President Barack Obama at a table
along with senior Congress and BJP leaders, was a takeoff on
Leonardo da Vinci`s masterpiece `The Last Supper`, showing
Jesus with his disciples.
The picture, titled `The Last Supper of Capitalism`, was
put up at Thirkannapura area of the city.
When asked about the board, CPI(M) State Secretary
Pinarayi Vijayan claimed it was put up "without the knowledge
of any responsible party functionary" and said his party had
"no intention to belittle the ideals of Christ or
"The moment the matter came to the notice of the local
party leaders, it was removed," Vijayan said.
Meanwhile, ruling UDF trained its guns on the CPI(M) for
displaying pictures of Jesus Christ and episodes from the
Bible as political material, terming them as "blasphemous and
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said distorting `The Last
Supper` for political purposes could be seen only as a
"heretical act" and the party would have to face the
consequences for hurting the sentiments of the believers.
State Congress president Ramesh Chennithala said there was
no justification for "vulgarisation" of `The Last Supper`.
"Instead of trying to justify the fault, CPI(M) leaders
should tender an unqualified apology to the people for hurting
their sentiments," Chennithala said in a statement.
Alleging that there was an attempt to tarnish the image of
the party, CPI(M) District Secretary Kadakampalli Surenderan
said the party has filed a complaint with the police on the
"The party suspects there is a conspiracy to soil its
image," he said.
The row over the politically-loaded board surfaced close
on the heels of a heated debate sparked by the display of a
picture of Jesus Christ in an exhibition organised by the
party ahead of its state conference starting tomorrow.
Reacting to the incident, the CPI(M) had defended itself
saying Jesus was a "frontline soldier" for the liberation of
the suppressed in human history.