CPI(M) worker hacked to death in north Kerala’s Kannur

Last week, the police said there was a minor clash between RSS and CPI (M) workers during a local temple festival in which two RSS activists were injured and the latest murder was suspected to be a sequel to this.
A Communist Party of India (Marxist) worker was stabbed to death allegedly by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) activists in Thalassery in Kannur district in the early hours of Monday. (HT FILE PHOTO.)
A Communist Party of India (Marxist) worker was stabbed to death allegedly by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) activists in Thalassery in Kannur district in the early hours of Monday. (HT FILE PHOTO.)
Published on Feb 21, 2022 06:37 PM IST
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A Communist Party of India (Marxist) worker was stabbed to death allegedly by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) activists in Thalassery in Kannur district (north Kerala) in the early hours of Monday.

According to the police, K Haridas (54), a fisherman, was attacked while he was returning home after work around 2.30 am. They said his brother also sustained minor injuries while trying to save him. Assailants who came on two motorbikes waited for Haridas near his house and attacked him, police said. He received more than 20 stab wounds and one of his legs was cut off in the attack, doctors said after an autopsy.

Kannur superintendent of police R Ilango said eight people were taken into custody in connection with the murder. “A full-fledged investigation is on and we will nab all who directly participated in the killing,” he said. Thalassery and surrounding areas observed a shutdown to protest the killing. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has condemned the murder and said strict action will be taken against perpetrators of the crime. He asked party workers not to get provoked and exercise restraint.

Party state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan has asked RSS leaders to rein in their cadres. “You can’t weaken the CPI(M) like this. Fascist forces want to vitiate peace,” he said. Party Kannur district secretary M V Jayarajan said a BJP councillor had made a provocative speech in the area last week and senior leaders of both, “RSS and BJP were aware of well-planned and executed murder.”

Last week, the police said there was a minor clash between RSS and CPI (M) workers during a local temple festival in which two RSS activists were injured and the latest murder was suspected to be a sequel to this. But BJP state president K Surendran said the party has no role in the murder. “A local tiff resulted in the killing,” he said.

Notorious for red-saffron clashes more than 200 workers of both, CPI (M) and RSS, have been killed in the past three decades in recurring clashes in the north Kerala district. In the last two years, there was fragile peace in the area after an all-party meet convened by the district administration and government. For CPI (M) Kannur is what Nagpur is to the RSS. Many top leaders including CM, party secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan and CITU president A K Padmanabhan belong to the district.

On a drive through the hinterland of Kannur, famous for its ancient martial art form Kalaripayattu, one can see many living examples. A man who lost his palm, a youth with a severed leg and another with deep gushes all over his body-- all victims of politics of intolerance. Two weeks back a youth was killed after a bomb was hurled at him after an altercation during a marriage ceremony. In party villages bomb-making thrives, admit senior police officials. Last week a BJP worker was injured while a country-made bomb he was assembling went off.

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Tuesday, June 28, 2022