Kerala CM meets BJP, RSS leaders amidst political violence

RSTV Bureau

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan convened a meeting with BJP-RSS leaders on Monday, in the state against the backdrop of the recent political violence and slaying of an RSS worker.

BJP state President Kummanam Rajasekharan, former Union minister and MLA, O Rajagopal and RSS leader P Gopalankutty attended the meeting called by the chief minister and agreed to support initiatives to promote peace and shun violence.

Briefing reporters after the meeting, Vijayan said similar meetings will also be held at Kannur, Kottayam and Thiruvananthapuram.

Condemning the recent violent incidents in parts of the state, he said political parties should be vigilant and initiate steps to create awareness among their cadre to shun violence.

“Though earlier peace meetings had decided that party offices, homes of party workers would not be attacked, it was unfortunate that a BJP office and house of Kodiyeri Balakrishnan were targeted in the violence in the state capital. Houses of several councilors were also damaged. This should not have happened. We need to be vigilant against such incidents and ensure that it does not happen again,” The CM said.

Rajasekharan, who spoke to reporters separately, said BJP and RSS would provide all support to the government initiatives to restore peace.

“We need to have peace in the state.But we also want political parties, religious and communal outfits to have the freedom to engage in their party activities,” he said and asked the government to provide the necessary atmosphere for it. Police should be impartial, he said.

The state BJP office was vandalised on July 28 while stones were thrown at the house of CPI(M) state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan’s son Bineesh Kodiyeri.

Rajesh was hacked to death by a history-sheeter-led gang here on Saturday. His left arm was chopped off and there were several injuries all over his body.

The BJP had called for a dawn-to-dusk state-wide hartal yesterday to protest the incident. Seven persons had been arrested so far in connection with the Rss worker’s slaying.

On Sunday, Kerala Governor P Sathasivam had summoned the chief minister and DGP Loknath Behara over the incident.

 Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan meeting with Kerala governor P Sathasivam at Raj Bhavan in Thiruvananthapuram on Sunday in response to the Governor's summons to ascertain the steps taken by the state government in the wake of the murder of an RSS functionary

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan meeting with Kerala governor P Sathasivam at Raj Bhavan in Thiruvananthapuram on Sunday in response to the Governor’s summons to ascertain the steps taken by the state government in the wake of the murder of an RSS functionary

The chief minister had assured him that he would be meeting BJP and RSS state leaders.

Vijayan and the DGP met the governor separately after they were summoned by the Raj Bhavan to ascertain the action taken following recent violent incidents including the murder of the 34-year-old Rajesh on July 29.

The state had been witnessing a series of violent incidents allegedly involving BJP-RSS and CPI-M workers with the capital district rocked by incidents of attacks on houses of rival party men in the past few days.

The state BJP office was vandalised on July 28 while stones were thrown at the house of CPI(M) state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan’s son Bineesh Kodiyeri here.

Rajesh was hacked to death by a history-sheeter-led gang here on Saturday. His left arm was chopped off and there were several injuries all over his body.

The BJP had called for a dawn-to-dusk state-wide hartal yesterday to protest the incident.

Police had said seven persons, including prime accused Manikandan, the history-sheeter, have been arrested in connection with the killing of the RSS workers.

They said the attack was due to personal enmity between Manikandan and the victim for the last one-and-half years.

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh spoke to the chief minister on Sunday and voiced concern over attacks on political workers in Kerala and said political violence was unacceptable in a democracy.

While BJP state president Kummanam Rajasekharan alleged that the CPI(M) was behind the attack, the CPI(M) district leadership has denied any role of the party in the attack.

CPI(M) state Secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan has said the RSS worker’s killing was a fallout of individual rivalry and his party had nothing to do with it.

However, Rajasekharan has alleged that the ruling CPI-M was trying to eliminate its political opponents and urged it to refrain from violence.

The opposition Congress had observed a fast yesterday in Kozhikode to protest against the politics of violence