Cops or Comrades? – Clandestine meet of Police association in CPM party Office

published on October 31, 2008




Cops’ panel meet at CPM office snowballs into a scandal

Daily Pioneer  | Kochi / Kottayam

A
meeting of the core committee of the Kerala Police Association (KPA) at
the TK Ramakrishnan Memorial Building, the district committee office of
the CPI(M) in Kottayam, has snowballed into a huge controversy and in
an effort to control the damage the Government has instituted an
enquiry by Inspector General of Police (Central Zone) Vincent M Paul.

The
enquiry was instituted even as the Home Department tried to ward off
the allegations with an explanation that no meeting of the KPA had been
held at the CPI(M) office on Thursday. It claimed that the
representatives of the association had reached the party office to
invite Suresh Kurup MP for a programme.

The Inspector General
started the inquiry on Friday itself by first recording the statements
of journalists at the spot when the meeting had taken place. The IGP
was inquiring aspects like who all had taken part in the meeting and
why the meeting had been convened.

Allegations have already been
raised that the meeting was not organised by the police association but
by the CPI(M) as the leader of the ruling front and as the party that
ruled the Police Department through Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan. A
Congress leader said that some leaders of the CPI(M) could have been
using the absence of Home Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, who was away
on a foreign tour, to prepare the police force for the coming Lok Sabha
election.

The meeting of about 40 policemen, including two women
cops, at the building on Thursday had become a controversy
instantaneously and some CPI(M) leaders and workers had an altercation
with the mediamen who had reached there to cover the proceedings. The
altercation also led to tension and the issue was settled after VN
Vasavan MLA and Dy SP PK Madhu reached the spot.

The meeting had
reportedly started at 10 am and ended by 2.30 pm. It was also said that
four senior CPI(M) leaders had taken classes for the policemen. IG
Vincent Paul would look into all these allegations.

The policemen had reached the party office for the meeting in civilian dress.

Reports
had said each police station in Kottayam district was represented by
one man and nine policemen from the district armed reserve camp had
participated in the meeting. Apart from them, district leaders of the
Kerala Police Association and Kerala Police Officers’ Association also
had reportedly attended it.

The association, however, told the
Home Department that only the KPA president and secretary had gone to
the party office and this was to invite CPI(M) MP Suresh Kurup for a
programme. It was on this explanation that the Home Department issued a
statement that there had not been any meeting of the KPA at the
Kottayam district committee office of the CPI(M).

The UDF has
raised serious allegations regarding the meeting. Opposition leader
Oommen Chandy said the conduct of a ‘secret’ KPA core committee meet at
the Marxist party office was a very serious issue, particularly in the
context of the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. He said he did not view it
as a meeting convened by the police association but by the Marxist
party.

“According to my information, the CPI(M) has plans to
convene such meetings in all the 14 districts of the State. This should
be seen as part of the preparation for the Lok Sabha election,” he told
newsmen in Thiruvananthapuram.

Chandy also said that the attack
against the mediamen by some party leaders and workers during the
meeting in Kottayam was highly condemnable. He added that it was
dangerous when the ruling parties began to use the police for political
purposes.

Kerala Congress (M) chairman and former Minister KM
Mani said in Kottayam that stern action should be taken against those
who were responsible for the conduct of the KPA core committee meet at
the CPI(M) district committee office.

Mani said that Home
Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan had lost control over the State police.
He asked Chief Minister VS Achuthanandan to provide the people with an
explanation for the clandestine meeting.

State BJP general
secretary MT Ramesh demanded legal action against the policemen who had
held a meeting illegally at the CPI(M) office in Kottayam.

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