First state to ban cow slaughter in India, The BJP demanded that the Kerala government outlaw halal food and halal signs in restaurants across the state on Sunday.
The BJP’s demand follows social media reports that Muslim clergy would spit on food and make it halal. Former VHP state president S J R Kumar filed a petition with the High Court last week, a complaint alleging that halal-certified jaggery was used to prepare prasadam at the Sabarimala temple.
In a press conference on Sunday, BJP state general secretary P Sudheer claimed that halal is a “social evil” similar to triple talaq. “The BJP does not consider halal to be a religious practice, and does not believe even Islamic scholars would support it.” Extremist organizations are attempting to implement a communal agenda in Kerala society by giving halal a religious veneer,” he said. “If this is being done on behalf of the religion, scholars should be ready to rectify it,” Sudheer said, claiming that the number of halal boards in the state has suddenly increased.
In Kozhikode, BJP state president K Surendran backed Sudheer, saying that Kerala’s “halal phenomenon” is “neither accidental nor innocent.”
“Halal culture is promoted by a small group of religious extremists. Those forces want to divide Keralans and create social tensions. “Spreading halal culture has a clear agenda,” Surendran explained.
P C George, a former leader of the Kerala Congress (M), a regional Christian party, has also joined the cause. George, an ex-legislator who recently drew the wrath of Muslim organizations for anti-community remarks, claimed on Sunday that halal food is part of religious fundamentalism.
Meanwhile, state BJP spokesman Sandeep G Varier, who had previously appealed for calm and stated that Hindus, Muslims, and Christians cannot coexist by “imposing economic siege against one another,” appeared to change his tune Sunday after party leaders stated that his observations would be investigated.