The Congress on Tuesday demanded that Kerala minister Saji Cheriyan be sacked immediately after he criticised the Constitution and said that by doing so he has "insulted" the ideals of India.
Speaking at a political programme at Mallappally in Pathanamthitta district of Kerala, CPI(M) leader Cheriyan had said that the Constitution "condones exploitation" and is written in a way to help "plunder" the people of the country.
The issue came to light after visuals of the speech were aired by regional television channels on Tuesday.
Congress general secretary organisation K C Venugopal strongly condemned and denounced the remarks by Cheriyan.
"He has not only insulted the Constitution he took an oath to, but Baba Saheb Ambedkar and the ideals of India. He must resign or be removed instantly," Venugopal said.
Strongly condemn & denounce the statement by Kerala CPI-M minister Saji Cheriyan blatantly attacking the Constitution of India.— K C Venugopal (@kcvenugopalmp) July 5, 2022
He has not only insulted the Constitution he took an oath to, but Baba Saheb Ambedkar and the ideals of India. He must resign or be removed instantly. https://t.co/35NE9dqrNo
Reacting sharply to the minister's remarks, Congress' general secretary Jairam Ramesh said on Twitter that Cheriyan, who made the most "obnoxious remarks" on the Constitution he swore an oath on, should be sacked immediately.
Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee 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.
"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," Satheesan said.
In his speech, Cheriyan had 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."
The minister also alleged that the Constitution of the country 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.
Values like "secularism" and "democracy", the "kuntham and kodachakram" (spear and wheel) were just inscribed on its (Constitution) sides, he added.
Stating ours is a country which does not accept workers' protests, Cheriyan 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.
(with inputs from PTI)