Malayalees living in Delhi took out a protest march to Parliament on Tuesday, demanding that Union minister Kiren Rijiju’s statement in the Lok Sabha that Kerala registered a large number of incidents of violence be expunged from the House proceedings.
The protesters, in a letter to Lok Sabha Speaker SumitraMahajan, said: “The minister’s statement would add to the already existing attempts to defame and tarnish Kerala’s reputation”.
National Federation of Indian Women general secretary Annie Raja, who led the protesters, claimed that Rijiju’s statement was “factually incorrect”.
“On July 31, while replying to a debate on mob lynching, Rijiju made a statement that between 2014 and 2016, Kerala, UP and West Bengal topped the list of states with most cases registered under sections 153 A and 153 B of the Indian Penal Code,” the letter said.
Sections 153 A and 153 B deal with promoting enmity between different groups on various grounds.
“The minister’s statement is factually incorrect and it hurts the sentiments of people of Kerala who always maintain communal harmony in the state,” it said.
The protesters demanded that the statement be deleted from the records of the House proceedings.
“Rijiju’s statement is an insult to the people of state.
It is a big lie. There is a political agenda behind it. On the floor of the House, he is lying and insulting people of the state,” she alleged.
Another protester, Damodaran of Janasamskriti, a Malayalee socio-cultural organisation, said: “We are not going to allow Kerala to be considered the worst place in the country. We do not want anyone to blame Kerala based on incorrect facts.”
(With PTI inputs)