BJP president J P Nadda on Sunday took aim at Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan over the gold smuggling case detected at the Thiruvananthapuram airport, and also accused him of "messing up" the COVID-19 situation in the state by "suppressing" figures.
Nadda alleged that the Left government in the state was "inefficient, corrupt and believed" in violence. Speaking from the national capital at the inauguration of a party office in Kerala's Kasaragod district, Nadda said the CPI(M)-led LDF and the Congress-led UDF were two sides of the same coin and sought people's support to his party.
With the BJP having been unable to make a serious political impact in the southern state despite its increased vote share in recent polls, Nadda accused the LDF and the UDF of joining hands to keep his party at bay, and asserted that the saffron organisation was determined to emerge victorious there.
Nadda attacked Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, who is a Lok Sabha MP from the state, as well for his criticism of the Modi government on the border standoff with China.
In a dig at Gandhi, he said wryly that the country was aware of his patriotism, and added that the Congress leader had "secretly" met the Chinese envoy in India during the Doklam crisis and "misled" the nation before people got to know about it when the envoy put out the information.
Gandhi skipped 11 meetings of the Parliament's committee on defence, and this shows his dedication to the issue, Nadda said, and accused him of "demoralising" the defence forces.
Raking up the gold smuggling case, which is being probed by the NIA, Nadda said the colour of gold is "red" in the state, as he attacked the Left government over the alleged role of an officer who worked in the chief minister's office.
"Misappropriation of funds, atrocities against Dalits and women, nepotism in political appointments and political patronage are prevalent under the Pinarayi government. Not only is it inefficient but it is also corrupt. It also believes in violence," he said.
Over 270 BJP workers have been killed in "CPI(M)-sponsored" political violence in the last two decades, Nadda said.
The coronavirus situation in Kerala, he alleged, was messed up by the Left government as it suppressed actual figures and did not pay heed to experts' calls for ramping up testing facilities.
"It has played politics at a time of crisis," Nadda said, adding that over 1.21 lakh people brought to the state as part of the Vande Bharat Mission were not given adequate help.
On the other hand, he said, the Modi government has left "no stone unturned" to push development in the state. More than Rs 2 lakh crore has been given for development of railway infrastructure, Rs 64,000 crore for national highways and Rs 3,400 crore for developing the Cochin shipyard, Nadda said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has an "emotional bonding" with Kerala, he said, highlighting the PM's interactions with its diaspora during his visits to the Gulf countries.
Though the BJP has no Lok Sabha MP from the state, the party has given it representation in Rajya Sabha and a voice in the Union government by making V Muraleedharan a minister, Nadda added. Assembly election is due in Kerala next year.