The previous UDF government in Kerala has constantly been in the news during the last year of its term mainly due to the scams and scandals in which many of its prominent Ministers were involved. Another reason was the introduction of the Kerala Hartal Regulatory Bill, 2015, which the then Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala had proposed, in order to curb unnecessary hartals and the damages caused by them to the public and the State. Though this move was protested by the LDF, which was the Opposition, it had received a positive response from the public.
The Hartal called by the UDF in Thiruvananthapuram, on Wednesday, however, was contrary to the principles they preached. The Opposition leader is having a tough time explaining whether the Hartal was necessary or “unnecessary”. Is it because the Bill was shelved by the ruling LDF government that the Opposition thought it would be fine to call a hartal? Only the UDF can explain the reasons.
But the Opposition leader, who was successful in creating a stir among the public with his Facebook post, seeking opinion regarding the Bill, has again come up with another post explaining why his party had called for one on Wednesday. In his post Mr. Chennithala wrote, “We see hartal as a mode of protest only in an unavoidable situation, like the one that happened recently. Hartal can be announced in an emergency situation and that is the main reason why the Bill is called the Hartal Regulatory Bill and not a Bill to ban hartal completely. Also, if the LDF had supported the Bill and cooperated with us in passing it, this hartal may not have been announced.”