Killers of BJP functionary identified, chasing them: Police

Published on Dec 23, 2021 05:39 PM IST

Suspects in the recent murder of BJP functionary Ranjith Sreenivas have been identified. Special police teams are deployed to track them down. 

BJP OBC Morch state secretary Ranjith Sreenivasan was hacked to death in his house allegedly by SDPI workers. The BJP leader was attacked on Sunday morning while he was coming out of his house for a morning stroll. (HT_PRINT)
BJP OBC Morch state secretary Ranjith Sreenivasan was hacked to death in his house allegedly by SDPI workers. The BJP leader was attacked on Sunday morning while he was coming out of his house for a morning stroll. (HT_PRINT)
PTI | , Alappuzha

All the 12 accused, suspected to have been directly involved in the recent murder of BJP functionary Ranjith Sreenivas here, have been identified but they have managed to escape from Kerala, police said on Thursday while the arrest of another person was recorded in the murder of SDPI's K S Shan for allegedly providing logistic support to the killers. 

Special police teams were deployed to track down the absconding culprits and the probe has been extended outside the state, ADGP (Law and Order) Vijay Sakhare told reporters here. The senior IPS officer, who heads the Special Investigation Team probing the back to back murder cases of Sreenivas and Shan, however, said they have got relevant information regarding the conspiracy in both cases but could not divulge the details as it would adversely impact the investigation. 

"All the 12 accused, directly involved in the murder of Sreenivas, have been identified. But, none of them are in the state now. We are chasing them. They will land in police custody soon," he said. It is sure that the killers had received external support to go into hiding and the police were examining the details, he said. 

Asked about the SDPI's allegations against frequent police searches in the houses of party activists and sympathisers, he said raids would continue in the suspected hideouts of the accused as it was important to nab the culprits. "We have to maintain that the law and order situation is not broken down. For that, raids are important," he said. An ambulance, suspected to have been used by the culprits involved in the Shan murder case, was seized by the police and its scientific and forensic examination would be carried out soon. "It is a cat and mouse game now. Every accused is in hiding but we will nab them at any cost," the senior officer added. 

Shan, the state secretary of SDPI, was killed by a gang on Saturday night while he was on his way home, while the BJP OBC Morcha state secretary Sreenivas was hacked to death in front of his family by some assailants in his house on Sunday morning. Five SDPI sympathisers have been arrested in connection with the murder of Sreenivas so far while the arrest of three persons have been recorded in Shan's killing, according to police. 

Meanwhile, police have registered as many as 30 cases across the state in the last five days against some people for spreading provocative messages through social media platforms in a manner that incites communal hatred. One person was arrested in a case registered by the West Police in Kollam district in this regard, an official statement said here. 

The highest number of cases was registered in the Ernakulam rural sector-13, while the other cases were registered in Thiruvananthapuram, Alappuzha, Kozhikode, Palakkad, Kottayam, Kozhikode, Thrissur and Kasaragod districts, it said. State DGP Anil Kant said it was a crime to propagate messages through social media platforms in a way that promotes social hatred and communal disharmony. Stating that the state police have launched a special monitoring system to keep an eye on such messages, he also said district police chiefs have been directed to complete investigation and take action against such culprits including arrest.

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