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Opposition seeks SC action for Shah’s remarks in Kerala

His comments on Sabarimala verdict contempt of court’

The Opposition parties on Sunday termed BJP president Amit Shah’s comments on the Supreme Court judgment allowing entry of women to the Sabarimala shrine as unconstitutional and contempt of court and hoped that the court would take suo motu cognisance of them and initiate action.

Addressing a meeting in Kerala’s Kannur on Saturday, Mr. Shah listed court verdicts which have not been implemented, including on ‘jallikattu’ (a traditional bull-taming sport of Tamil Nadu) and prohibiting loudspeakers in mosques, and said “impractical” directions should not be given by courts, and they should pass only orders that could be implemented.

‘Hand behind protest’

The CPI(M) cited this speech to repeat its allegation that the BJP was orchestrating the violent protests that have hit Kerala following the September 28 judgment. The party’s Polit Bureau said in a statement here that Mr. Shah’s remarks exposed the hand behind the agitation. “The ruling party president blatantly ridicules the Supreme Court judgment in keeping with the RSS-BJP’s contempt for the Constitution and the Supreme Court. The threat of toppling the Kerala government if it continues to uphold the judgment is another display of the anti-democratic, authoritarian attitude typical of Amit Shah,” the party said.

Kerala Finance Minister Thomas Issac said Mr. Shah’s comments showed the BJP’s frustration over its failure to make a significant electoral mark in the State.

“Amit Shah was permitted to land in the Kannur airport which is to be opened on November 9. That is our tradition of hospitality. But he is threatening to oust the Kerala government. Such empty threats do not frighten us,” he said on Twitter.

Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi said Mr. Shah’s comments were another attempt to first weaken and then finish off institutions.

He said that Mr. Shah’s remarks “insult the intelligence of the institution and the electorate.”

“It is the goal of the BJP to first weaken institutions and then finish them off…there is a long list, be it CBI, EC, CVC and the CIC…now the same intervention has been made without understanding of law,” Mr. Singhvi told a press conference.

BSP president Mayawati said Mr. Shah’s speech was aimed at the upcoming Assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan.

Opposition seeks SC action for Shah’s remarks in Kerala

“The statement of the ruling party president is condemnable and irresponsible. The court should take cognisance. It shows the democracy of the country is in danger. Autonomous institutions such as CBI, CVC, ED and RBI are facing a crisis due to the wrong perspective of the government and its ego,” she said.

Instead of creating chaos on the roads or threatening to dismiss an elected government, Ms. Mayawati said the BJP government should approach the court if it is not satisfied with the apex court’s decision.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal accused Mr. Shah of creating anarchy.

“Amit Shah actively encouraging people to violate SC orders. Creating anarchy. Hopefully, SC will take cognisance (sic),” Mr. Kejriwal tweeted.

(With PTI inputs)