Kerala BJP spokesperson B Gopalakrishnan courted controversy on Thursday as he suggested that renowned filmmaker Adoor Gopalakrishnan should consider moving to the Moon if he was unable to tolerate with those chanting “Jai Shri Ram”.
Kerala BJP spokesperson B Gopalakrishnan courted controversy on Thursday as he suggested that renowned filmmaker Adoor Gopalakrishnan should consider moving to the Moon if he was unable to tolerate with those chanting “Jai Shri Ram”. The BJP leader’s reaction came a day after 49 signatories had voiced their concerns in a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on incidents of lynchings across the country. Gopalakrishnan was one of the 49 signatories.
According to The Indian Express, Gopalakrishnan told Adoor in a Facebook post, “If you are not keen to hear it (Jai Sri Ram), please register your name at Sriharikota and you can go to the moon.” It will be better if he changed his name, he added.
Adoor hit back at Gopalakrishnan’s remarks that he will go to the Moon if he gets a ticket. The filmmaker further said their letter voicing concern was neither against the government, nor against those chanting ‘Jai Sri Ram’, but against incidents of lynching using the “chant as a war cry”.
Adoor claimed that he has received threat calls over the letter. Another signatory and actor Kaushik Sen also alleged that he has also received a threat call after writing the letter.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan threw their weights behind Adoor and condemned the BJP leader’s comments.
Terming it part-2 of the 2014 “award wapsi”, Union Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi had dismissed the concerns and said that they saw the same thing after 2014 Lok Sabha polls in the name of ‘award wapsi’. This is just part two of that, he added.
In their letter to PM Modi, the signatories had said that there is “no democracy without dissent”, and that people should not be branded as “anti-nationals” or “urban Naxals” for voicing dissent. “Lynching of Muslims, Dalits and other minorities must be stopped immediately. We were shocked to learn from NCRB (National Crime Records Bureau) reports that there have been no less than 840 instances of atrocities against Dalits in 2016, and a definite decline in the percentage of convictions,” it stated.