Kerala Minister Says Constitution of India 'Condones Exploitation', Draws Flak From Congress, BJP

Congress and the BJP have called for the removal of Kerala minister Saji Cheriyan from the Cabinet over his comments on the Constitution.

Kerala Minister Saji Cherian

Kerala Minister Saji Cheriyan has courted controversy by harshly criticising the Constitution of India, saying it "condones exploitation" and is written in a way to help "plunder" people of the country. 

Cheriyan's comments have drawn flak from various quarters including Kerala's main Oppsition party Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which is in power at the centre. 

Cheriyan was speaking at a recent political programme at Mallappally in this southern district and the issue came to the light after visuals of the speech were aired by regional television channels on Tuesday.

He said, "We all say that we have a beautifully written Constitution in India, the most significant aspect of the country. But I will say a beautiful Constitution, which can serve to loot the most number of people, was written in the country."

He also alleged  that the Constitution of India was "compiled by the British" and it was written as such by an Indian which has been implemented in the country for the last 75 years.

He said values like "secularism" and "democracy", the "kuntham and kodachakram" [spear and wheel] were just inscribed on its [Constitution] sides.

He added that he won't agree with anyone who preaches the other way in the country.

Stating ours is a country which does not accept workers' protests, he said "Indian Constitution is one which condones the [labour] exploitation the most" and claimed this was the reason certain "millionaires" in the corporate sector have grown in the country. 

Cheriyan's remarks did not go down well with the Opposition Congress and the BJP.        

Strongly criticising his remarks, KPCC president K Sudhakaran and Leader of Opposition in the state Assembly V D Satheesan urged Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan to remove Cheriyan from the cabinet or face stringent legal action.

Satheesan said, "By insulting the Constitution, Saji Cheriyan violated the Oath of Office. He not only humiliated the architects of the Constitution but also insulted values like secularism and democracy. He should resign or he should be shunted out from the ministry. Otherwise, we will seek legal measures against him."