BJP does not want its rivals in the Opposition to unite: MK Stalin

Tamil Nadu chief minister and DMK chief MK Stalin has said the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Prime Minister Narendra Modi want their political rivals in the Opposition to contest separately because the party can no longer count solely on the image of the PM for victory in the 2024 elections.

Tamil Nadu chief minister M K Stalin.(PTI)

Speaking to HT in an interview, Stalin also said that the BJP was misusing federal agencies against political opponents, and emphasised that a Uniform Civil Code has no place in a diverse nation such as India.

“The BJP is very firm that parties opposed to them and their ideology should not unite. The BJP stands to gain the most when we contest as more than one alliance. This is precisely why raids (by ED and CBI) are conducted. The objective of these raids is to intimidate and threaten,” Stalin said.

“The BJP cannot secure victory solely by showcasing his (Modi’s) countenance. This is precisely why he posed with the leaders of 39 parties… The disparaging remarks towards the Congress, Rahul Gandhi, DMK, and various other opposition parties are [also] a result of this,” he said.

His comments come at a time when 26 Opposition parties, including the DMK, have formed the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance, or INDIA, to take on the BJP in the next general elections.

Stalin said that Modi’s speech during the no-confidence motion in Parliament on Thursday was akin to a political rally, and that the violence that has torn Manipur apart for more than three months was a result of the ruling party’s “divisive, hate politics”.

“The BJP government in Manipur knew this would happen there. The Union government also knew. But they underestimated the magnitude of it. Violence is a double-edged sword. The Manipur crisis have become BJP’s Frankenstein’s monster,” he said.

On Senthil Balaji, a minister in his state cabinet being under investigation, Stalin said the BJP was misusing federal agencies as a form of revenge against political opponents.

“We do not view these arrests as criminal investigations but as political investigations,” he said. The CM reiterated DMK’s opposition to UCC, saying it must not be conflated with criminal law.

“Criminal law pertains to crimes, and the penalties for committing them are uniform for all. There is no objection to this principle. However, UCC delves into customs and practices. In India, people adhere to diverse cultures and traditions…UCC would disrupt the public peace and harmony of India,” Stalin said.

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