Kodiyeri back in charge – Kerala cops drop jihadi hunt, target Sangh Parivar

published on November 18, 2008

Kerala cops drop jihadi hunt, target Sangh Parivar

VR Jayaraj | Kannur – Daily Pioneer

The Kerala Police has dropped its hunt for jihadi elements in the State, which had led to the arrest of six hardcore extremist operatives with links even to Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Tayyeba within 20 days and collection of vital information. Instead, the police are now concentrating their energies on a hunt for bombs in the politically volatile Kannur district allegedly keeping in line with the CPI(M)’s programme of targeting the Sangh Parivar.

Home Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, who is also a member of the CPI(M) Politburo, had landed back in Kerala from his 20-day foreign tour on November 10, and that incidentally was the day when the police made the last arrests in its jihadi hunt. Since then, there has been no searches for terror elements, but in the following days the Kerala Police have unearthed close to 200 bombs from various places in Kannur district.

Ten bombs were recovered even on Tuesday. The CPI(M) has been trying desperately to connect all these hauls with the BJP and the RSS despite the lack of any conclusive evidence.

Sources in the police admitted that the special anti-terror squad of the Kerala Police, formed just before Kodiyeri had left Kerala for his tour of the West on October 22, had almost become inactive. The Kerala Police had done a commendable job in the 20 days of the absence of the Home Minister who looked after police affairs.There were allegations that the hunt for jihadi elements was dropped when the needle of suspicion had begun pointing exactly towards the PDP of Abdul Nasser Madani, which had been supporting the CPI(M) and the ruling LDF it led. Several of the arrested extremists, as well as those in the police watch list, were reported to have close connections with the PDP.

The opposition parties had alleged that the LDF Government, particularly the CPI(M), was not acting against the PDP because it did not want to disturb its electoral support. The Sangh Parivar also had said that the CPI(M) did not want to touch the PDP for the same reason.

Though the political parties had criticised Kodiyeri for choosing to have a “picnic” abroad exactly when he was to lead the police in its unprecedented terror hunt in Kerala, they now say that the anti-extremist operations had been going strong when he was away. They point out that the police had not made any arrests after his return nor had there been any serious searches for terror elements.

Even on the eve of Kodiyeri Balakrishnan’s return from his foreign tour on November 10, the police had said that they could soon arrest Nazeer of Neerchal, Kannur and Ibrahim Moulvi of Vellamunda, Wayanad, considered as top recruiters for LeT in Kerala. But on the morning of the same day, two RSS workers were killed in a blast near Koothuparamba, Kannur, and all of a sudden the focus of police action was shifted from terror to bombs. There had been no word from the police since then about the searches for the dreaded terror operatives, Nazeer and Moulvi.

Within five days since November 10, 163 bombs, said to be of high-intensity grade, were recovered from various parts of Kannur district, generating suspicion that the police should have known of all these explosives much in advance. The CPI(M) was quick to allege that all these bombs were made by the BJP-RSS in preparation for the coming Lok Sabha elections. State BJP president PK Krishnadas said the bomb-hunt was the result of a secret meeting held between some CPI(M) leaders and pro-Left police officials for finding ways to trap Sangh Parivar and Hindu activists.

In the operation during the 20-day absence of Kodiyeri’s, the police had arrested six terrorists in Kannur district alone. The first to be arrested in the whole operation was NDF activist Abdul Jaleel of Edakkad, Kannur on October 19. The Home Minister had left for Singapore, Australia and the US on October 22 giving the charge of his department to Local Administration Minister Paloli Muhammad Kutty.

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