Islamic outfit behind unrest in Kerala village: Police

via PNS | Kozhikode published on May 9, 2010

The Intelligence wing of the Kerala Police reported that Solidarity Youth Movement, the youth outfit of Jama’at-e-Islami, was responsible for sparking off the conflict in Kinalur, Kozhikode district on Thursday in which more than 60 persons, including women and police personnel, were injured. The incident has led to paranoid conditions in the villages in the region with people fleeing their homes due to fear of continued police brutality.

The police had unleashed brutal terror in Kinalur after stones were pelted at them from among the people who had blocked a Revenue Department team from carrying out a survey for acquiring land for the construction of a 26-km, four-lane road to a 270-acre industrial estate where no significant units existed or were proposed.

The police had also raided also sown terror in the villages by breaking into houses and damaging vehicles parked in the courtyards. People were fleeing their houses in the region even on Saturday fearing the raids by police who had registered cases against 150 persons on the charge of attempt to murder. Even several seriously injured women had left their homes for relatives’ places.

According to the Intelligence wing of the State police, the activists of Solidarity present among the protestors had provoked the police by hurling stones and pre-collected cow-dung at them. The report said that the cow-dung, mixed with water, had been brought from the nearby villages deliberately to create tension.

It also said that the Solidarity workers, who had positioned themselves in the back rows of the protesters, had escaped after provoking the police by hurling stones at them. At least six policemen, including a DySP, suffered injuries in the stone-pelting. Officials claimed that the method of using cow-dung and creating tension through surprise moves had similarities with that of some Maoist outfits.

However, local residents said the allegation was baseless and it was part of the CPI(M)’s strategy to project the incident as an extremist action. “This is the same method the CPI(M) had adopted over Nandigram. When the protests by the local people had led to conflicts there, the CPI(M) had alleged involvement of Maoists. Indeed, Kinalur is the Nandigram of Kerala,” said a Solidarity activist in Kinalur.

He said Solidarity had supported the protests of the people in Kinalur and “so have several other organizations including the mainstream political parties.” “The protest against the land acquisition is spearheaded by a local rights forum, Jana Jagrata Samithi, and we all support it. The police report, if at all something like that is there, is part of the CPI(M)’s plan to term the incident as an extremist plot and to paint Solidarity in extremist colours,” he added.

At the same time, Union Minister of State for Home Mullappally Ramachandran asked the Kerala Government to launch a comprehensive probe into the police excesses in Kinalur. The Minister said that if terrorists’ involvement was suspected it should also be brought to light. He said development projects should be taken up after clearing the doubts of the people.

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