C. Ranjit, local BJP leader and elected councilor of the Thalavoor Grama Panchayat, Pathanamthitta district, opted an out of the box method of protest against Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. He painted his entire body in white, from toe to hairs. It was a sarcastic protest against the chief minister in view of the brutal attack the black flag protesters suffer at the hands of the DYFI goons, (CM’s) gunman and police. Police allegedly do not allow people, clad in black dress, to go closer to the programmes of the CM. During the days of Corona-19, even a media woman was allegedly asked, by the police, to remove black mask when she went to report CM’s programme. There were reports of the arrest of two transgender activists as they were in black dress when they went near the venue of CM’s programme in Kochi.
Even though CM said that there was no such restrictions, police personnel reportedly did not stop it.
Now, the entire cabinet is travelling to all 140 assembly constituencies in connection with the much publicised Nava Kerala Sadas of the CPM-led Left Democratic Front government. Several places witnessed DYFI and CPM attacks against the black flag protests of Youth Congress workers. In one incident, they were attacked by DYFI men with plant pots, iron rod and helmets. In another incident, CM’s gunman jumped out of the vehicle, which accompanied the luxury bus carrying the entire cabinet to all constituencies, and beat the black flag protesters brutally. Even a physically challenged man was brutally attacked. But, in all cases, CM justified the attacks. He said, Youth Congress men came as suicide squads and CPM men saved them hence it was a rescue operation. About the attack of the gunman, CM said, he did not see it. Even after nearly a week, still all Malayalam TV channels keep on telecasting the visuals of the gunman’s ‘performance’.
Here is the relevance and significance of Ranjith’s ‘white protest’. He even painted a steel chair in white to sit on the way side when the cabinet vehicle passes by. And, he was arrested and kept under custody during the whole day.
Renjit had hit the headlines some time back when he protested against the continuous increase in the electricity charges in the state. He opted to pay the coins of Rs 7,000 as the electricity charges for nine consumers in his Panchayat ward. Idea was to air his protest by creating inconveniences to the Electricity Board officials.
Renjit told the media persons that God had created him with black complexion and he wears black dress; but, the CM, ’king’ according to Renjit, does not like black colour hence he painted his body and dress in white. He said, he did not do it as a protest but, due to his desire to live harmoniously in the state.
Even though Renjith’s action looks sarcastic, it throws light on the current political situation in the state.