Regardless of their political differences, almost all Muslim organisations, including the mainstream party Indian Union Muslim League, dubbed Achuthanandan's statement as
"dangerous" and meant to "insulting the entire community."
The 86-year-old CPI (M) veteran, while talking to reporters in New Delhi on Saturday, said the Popular Front, under scanner for chopping off the hand of a college lecturer,
was indulging in communal and divisive activities with the aim of turning Kerala into a Muslim majority state.
While dubbing Achuthanandan's comment as "deplorable" and "dangerous", UDF leaders suspected it was part of a strategy of his party to play "Hindu card" in the forthcoming
civic and assembly polls "as a last-ditch attempt" to regain the eroded support base of ruling LDF, as reflected in Parliament elections last year.
"Through his statement, Chief Minister is testing waters if the LDF could garner votes of the majority community since it has incurred the wrath of the minority communities through its policies," UDF convener PP Thankachan said.
Thankachan, a senior Congress leader, dared CPI(M) leadership to come out with its position on Achuthanandan's statement.
BJP said the chief minister's comment betrayed the "double standard" of his party on the issues of communalism and extremism.
If Achuthanandan was serious in his concerns on the growth of communal and extremist forces, he should be ready to outlaw Popular Front and issue a white paper on the radical
outfits working in the state, BJP state president V Muraleedharan said.
Two months back, Achuthanandan surprised political circles in the state by saying Muslim and Christian communalism had been gaining strength in Kerala.
However, he later clarified that he only meant that certain elements in these communities were trying to push their communal agenda, it was interpreted by his political
adversaries as a tactic to win the majority support.
Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Chief Minister VS Achuthanandan incurred the ire of Muslim organisations and political parties for stating that radical outfit Popular
Front wanted to turn the state into a Muslim-majority through their communal and divisive activities.
First Published: Monday, July 26, 2010, 13:28