Thiruvananthapuram | BJP today demanded an apology from Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy for the continuing deaths of children in the state’s tribal areas due to poverty and starvation. Forget the comparison. I am telling you for the deaths of two children on Friday.
Chief Minister should apologise. Children are dying. Isn’t this an issue in Kerala?, BJP President Amit Shah said when asked about Chandy demanding an apology from Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his Somalia-Kerala remark. The issue is not what someone has said. The issue is about starvation deaths and condition of tribal children in the state, Shah told reporters at a press conference here.
The BJP supremo was pointing at the two deaths of new born children at a tribal colony in Waynad district yesterday. Replying to another query, he said there was no starvation deaths of children in Gujarat. Don’t make wrong statements. If you have data, show me, he said.
An English magazine in 2013 had published a report about starvation deaths in Kerala.
The insensitive Chief Minister had given a reply stating that people are dying as they are not eating properly, Shah claimed. The magazine had quoted Culture Affairs Minister K C Joseph as saying that the deaths were due to alcohol consumption among tribal families.
The BJP leader urged journalists to visit Attapady, a tribal settlement in Palakkad district, where several instances of infant deaths due to malnutrition have been reported and tell the truth.
If there are no deaths, print it. But if children have died of starvation, then the Chief Minister should explain why children are dying.
It is very easy to create controversy with figures. Please go and visit the place, he said, adding, starvation deaths cannot be hidden by using mere datas. Gareebon ki bhook, bhok hoti hai, Mritiyu, Mritiyu hoti hai. Aakando se ye chipaya nahi jata (starvation of the poor is starvation and deaths are deaths. It cannot be hidden under figures), he said, adding Chandy government has the responsibility to address the issue. The government of India is sending food-grains to the state. Where has it gone? Why has it not reached the tribal children? the BJP chief asked.