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BJP not ‘anti-Christian,’ instead embraces pro-poor agenda, says John Barla

Aizawl: Union Minister of State for Minority Affairs of India, John Barla, emphatically dispelled notions of the BJP as “anti-Christian” during his address at the ‘Atal Bhavan’, the BJP state unit office in Aizawl. 

Barla, known for his active Christian faith, redefined the party’s stance, branding it as pro-poor, which is harmony with Christian values.

Barla, addressing a gathering of BJP workers on Saturday evening, highlighted that the BJP’s principles align seamlessly with the tenets of Christianity, emphasising compassion and welfare for the marginalised. He urged the Christian community in Mizoram to recognise the BJP’s potential to usher in the developmental initiatives championed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, which are presently hindered.

Countering allegations of Christian persecution propagated by some quarters, Barla underscored the paradox of his own presence as a Christian in the central ministry. He attributed such accusations to opposition parties’ tactics to discredit the ruling party.

Furthermore, Barla drew attention to the Mizoram government’s alleged disregard for central welfare programmes, claiming that such negligence had led to the suffering of the populace. He called for the BJP’s ascension to power in the state’s forthcoming legislative assembly election, viewing it as pivotal for comprehensive progress in Mizoram.

In his criticism of the ruling Mizo National Front (MNF), Barla accused Chief Minister Zoramthanga’s administration of prioritising personal gains over public welfare. He lamented the lack of awareness and implementation of central schemes initiated by PM Modi within the state.

MNF is an ally of BJP under the National Democratic Alliancem which chief minister Zoramthanga defended as ‘issue-based’.

Barla, a devout Christian himself, participated in prayer and worship at the Salvation Army’s Temple Corps on Sunday morning. Later in the evening, he attended a church service at the Baptist Central Church.

Mizoram, an outlier in the northeastern region of India, stands firm in resisting what it views as the ‘anti-Christian’ BJP. As a result, Mizoram stands as the sole state in the northeastern region where the BJP has been unable to establish a foothold. 

The contrasting political affiliations between the MNF and BJP, particularly the former’s alignment with the BJP-led National Democratic Front at the national level while not forging a state-level alliance, underscores the complexity of voter sentiments toward the BJP. Notably, the lone BJP member in Mizoram remains in the opposition, despite a BJP ally ruling the state. The MNF’s participation in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) has been a subject of intense critique from opposing parties.

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