After the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Monday filed a chargesheet against two Kerala CPI-M leaders in connection with a 2012 murder case, the Congress and the BJP on Wednesday demanded immediate action by the party against the accused leaders.
P. Jayarajan, the CPI-M District Secretary in Kannur, was charged under Sections 302 (murder) and 124(b) (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), while T.V. Rajesh, CPI-M MLA from Kalliasseri in Kannur district, was charged under Section 124(b).
The chargesheet was filed before the Tellichery Court on Monday and the details were made available to the media on Wednesday.
Jayarajan and Rajesh were arrested and jailed following the murder of Abdul Shukoor, a 22-year-old Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) activist, in Kannur district in February 2012. But they were released on bail later that year. The chargesheet states that the two CPI-M leaders had a crucial role in Shukoor’s murder.
The Leader of Opposition, Congress’s Ramesh Chennithala, told reporters that the CPI-M often talks about probity in politics, and should now put it into practice.
“The party should remove Jayarajan from his post and force Rajesh to quit the Assembly. But Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s silence on the matter is a clear indication that they are doing their best to save the two leaders. While the veteran V.S. Achuthanandan said let the law take its course, party Secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan’s response shows that the law would take its course just the way his party thinks,” said Chennithala.
State BJP President P.S. Sreedharan Pillai told the media that when the incident took place, the state had a Congress-led government and the police acted in a manner that the accused could get out of the noose easily.
“But the CBI acted in a different manner and found out about the involvement of the CPI-M leaders in the murder. The CPI-M should ensure appropriate action against the two leaders,” said Pillai.
Dismissing the Opposition’s demands, State Industries Minister E.P. Jayarajan said it has now become a habit to tarnish the image of the party by registering false and baseless cases against its leaders.
“The CPI-M does not need advice from others on how to go about things. We know how to tackle all this as we have always handled such cases of victimisation very well in the past,” said Jayarajan.
Shukoor was killed near Thaliparamba in Kannur district in 2012. The investigators claimed that he was murdered because he had allegedly blocked and attacked the vehicle in which the two accused CPI-M leaders were travelling. His murder occurred within hours of the attack on their vehicle.