'Once you join BJP, crimes will be cleansed': Old tweet haunts Vadakkan

Tom Vadakkan
Former AICC spokesperson Tom Vadakkan.
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As former Congress spokesperson Tom Vadakkan dominated headlines on Thursday afternoon when he joined the BJP, he would have quickly released he has a new enemy: his past tweets!

Vadakkan, a key 'backroom' player in the Congress leadership and a senior aide of Sonia Gandhi, announced he was leaving the party as he was opposed to its stance on the Balakot attack. However, soon after joining the BJP, social media users started sharing a tweet from a Twitter handle purportedly used by Vadakkan. Vadakkan had tweeted, “Once you join BJP, all your crimes will be cleansed”. The Twitter handle is followed by the official handle of the Congress.

Vadakkan had posted the tweet in early February in response to a comment by journalist Nikhil Wagle on Mukul Roy, who was not charged in the Saradha scam after he left the Trinamool Congress to join the BJP.

A week ago, Vadakkan had retweeted an article about money laundering accusations against former BJD leader Jay Panda. Vadakkan posted the tweet on the day Panda joined the BJP.

Vadakkan's Twitter handle is loaded with posts and retweets that are critical of the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Which is ironical as Vadakkan claimed to being inspired by the development initiatives of Modi when he joined the BJP on Thursday. Moreover, Vadakkan retweeted posts from Kapil Sibal and Karnataka Congress unit chief Dinesh Gundu Rao expressing doubt about the casualty figures of the Balakot strike.

Some media reports have speculated Vadakkan may be given a Lok Sabha ticket by the BJP to contest from his home state of Kerala, though he has not been active in politics there. However, his opponents are likely to find enough ammunition in old tweets to keep Vadakkan pinned down.

This article first appeared in The Week.

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