Pinarayi calls Chennithala anti-women and anti-speaker

CM calls Chennithala anti-women and anti-speaker
(From left) Pinarayi Vijayan, Ramesh Chennithala and P Sreeramakrishnan.

Thiruvananthapuram: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said that opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala's charge that he had sent a note to the speaker to end the day's proceedings was an attempt to undermine the authority of the speaker. “Questioning the authority of the Speaker was never before heard of. The opposition leader should not have made such a charge,” the chief minister told reporters here on Monday.

Earlier in the day, Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan had abruptly ended the proceedings soon after the chief minister was seen passing a note to him. The opposition was quick to pounce on this. Chennithala accused the speaker of bowing to the chief minister's diktat. The speaker, on the other hand, had said that the chief minister had asked that the proceedings should not be cut short. Pinarayi Vijayan, however, did not say whether he had given such an advice to the speaker.

Renaissance wall

On the issue of the 'women's wall' the government was planning on January 1, the chief minister said that the opposition leader was crossing all limits. Pinrayi was especially critical of Chennithala's statement that the “wall would be destroyed”. Pinarayi termed this statement both anti-women and undemocratic.

He said Chennithala had an orthodox mindset that shivered at the prospect of women being empowered. “The women's wall is being organised by the descendants of women who had once played a dominant role in renaissance movements,” the chief minister said. “Women had taken part in the renaissance movements of the yore in large numbers. But their deeds were not spoken of in proportion to their impact. This has to change. It is this attempt to bring women once again to the fore of social movement that Chennithala is now trivialising,” the chief minister said.

Sabarimala temple
Pilgrims visit Sabarimala temple.

Further, Pinarayi said that the idea of 'women's wall' was not something that was mooted by the government. “We did not even present the event as a resolution. It was the opinion that came up during the discussion held with leaders of various social organisations,” he said. Chennithala had said that the 'women's wall' was a CPI(M) programme and that public money should not be utilised for the event. “We have reports that Kudumbashree and MGNREGS workers are being forced to take part in the event,” Chennithala said.

Free for all get-together

Though he did not mention C P Sugathan by name, the chief minister said that no social organisation was kept out on the bsasis of their past deeds. The charge was that Hindu Parliament leader Sugathan was a misogynist who was in the forefront of the attack on women in Sabarimala. “We had invited even those organsiations that had opposed women's entry but had played a big part in the renaissance movement,” he said, clearly referring to the NSS that had boycotted the meeting called by the chief minister on December 1. NSS general secretary Sukumaran Nair, like Chennithala, had accused the chief minister of dividing the state in the name of religion and caste.