A speech by a Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh leader from Madhya Pradesh, in which he declared a bounty of ₹1 crore for anyone who brings him Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s head, has created a flutter in the State.
Even as Mr. Vijayan chose to dismiss the threat in a Facebook post, there was all-round condemnation of the speech from various quarters.
The State BJP and RSS have distanced themselves from the Madhya Pradesh leader’s comments.
In the speech, RSS’s Ujjain Prachar Pramukh Kundan Chandrawat was heard saying: “I have enough property in my name. I will bequeath my property of ₹1 crore to anyone who is ready to behead the Kerala Chief Minister.” He further said: ‘‘Have you forgotten Godhra? When they killed just 56 of us, we sent 2,000 of them to the kabristan (graveyard). Now, the communists have killed 300 of us in Kerala. We will adorn Bharat Mata with a garland of three lakh heads.”
CM dismisses threat
In his short response, Mr. Vijayan said: “I have seen the news that a Sangh Parivar leader in Madhya Pradesh has announced a reward for my head. The RSS has chopped off several heads. But that cannot prevent me from walking my way. I dismiss with contempt their death threats.”
The CPI(M) State secretariat said the death threat revealed the RSS’ face of terror. “The seriousness of this threat increases from the fact that it was made in the presence of BJP Ujjain MP Chintamani Malviya and MLA Mohan Yadav. The BJP-RSS is rattled by the Chief Minister’s presence in a communal harmony rally in Mangaluru, despite the Sangh Parivar’s threats to disrupt the meeting. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the RSS leadership should condemn the threat.”
Leader of the Opposition Ramesh Chennithala demanded the arrest of the RSS leader who issued the death threat.
“This is an indication that the ones who celebrated the death of Mahatma Gandhi will turn against anyone,” he said. CPI leader and Agriculture Minister V.S. Sunil Kumar said the comments were reminiscent of those made by Godse.
Distancing itself from the comment, the BJP State leadership said such threats were not the style of the party, which worked in a democratic way.