Wayanad: Rahul Gandhi’s campaign has sparked a new controversy. When few supporters in Wayanad cheered his candidature by waving flags, which bore a star and a crescent on each of them, many mistook them for Pakistan flags.

One of the UDF allies is the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML), whose flag bears a star and a crescent on it. These are the flags that were waved by few supporters of the Congress president.

When MyNation spoke to Kerala BJP president Sreedharan Pillai regarding the incident, he said that it was not Pakistan flag, but an IUML flag that was used. He also added that he had received word that the Congress high command had advised its party workers to abstain from using green flags for the campaign.

Pillai also recalled an incident when former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru stood against the Muslim community. He remarked, “Once, a Muslim party leader from Kerala, who was delivering a speech, wore a Muslim cap and Nehru asked him to remove it. Years later, they are seeking support from the same community.”

Pillai also added that Wayanad people are against the Congress in all the seven seats of the Wayanad constituency; three from Wayanad district (Sultan Bathery, Kalpetta, Mananthavady), three from Malappuram (Nilambur, Wandoor, Eranad) and one from Kozhikode (Thiruvambady). “The only reason why Rahul seeks help from the Muslim party is because majority of the people residing in Wayanad are Muslims,” he stated.

Kottayam MLA PC George of the Congress also spoke to MyNation and said that he does not know why the IUML used their flags during Rahul’s campaign.  He said, “Rahul is contesting from Wayanad and the majority of the people are Muslims and obviously he would need their support, but I don’t understand the need to use IUML flags. I also don’t understand why Rahul had to contest from Wayanad. But what’s most surprising in all of this is the comparison of the IUML flag to the Pakistan flag and people raising this at a time when the tensions between the country are so high.”

PC George also stated that the Congress had earlier requested the IUML to not use their flags, but the party had gone ahead and used it anyway.  

After much speculation over a fortnight, on March 31, the Congress announced that Rahul Gandhi would try his luck from Wayanad, besides Amethi in Uttar Pradesh.