The Kerala BJP is reportedly confused over the stance it has to take on the central governmentâ€™s decision to impose restrictions on cooperative banks in the state. While BJP leaders Kummanam Rajashekharan and V Muraleedharan have openly accused the cooperative banking sector of being a hub of black money in the state, many other leaders expressed their reservation at making sweeping statements given the fact that a number of party cadre were beneficiaries of the cooperative sector.
The RBI has restricted cooperative banks from exchanging old notes for new and also depositing demonetised currency.
The Hindu reports that the BJP has a major stake in 49 banks across Kerala and in many cooperative societies, related to womenâ€™s welfare, farmers and marketing.
Citing sources in the cooperative sector, the paper states that the BJP have absolute control over 14 banks in Kasaragod district, eight in Kannur, six in Thiruvananthapuram, two each in Pathanamthitta, Kottayam, Thrissur, and Kozhikode and one each in Wayanad, Malappuram, and Ernakulam.
As a result of the Centreâ€™s move, a number of welfare societies that is also under BJPâ€™s control in the state would face the heat. The report observes that cooperative societies have in the past helped the BJP in elections, mainly in Thiruvananthapuram and Kasaragod, as it brought party sympathisers together.
However, reports suggest that a few senior leaders have expressed their opposition to the restrictions.
Shiv Sena, an NDA ally had shown solidarity to the Left government protest on Friday against the RBIâ€™s restrictions on District Cooperative Banks (DCB).
The Congress party in Kerala had also extended its support to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan's protest.
The protesting parties had claimed that BJP is trying to destroy the cooperative sector of state. CM Pinarayi Vijayan had said that cooperative sector is the back bone of Kerala and not the hub of black money.