Marad: Partial justice, says BJP

via Pioneer News Service | Kozhikode published on December 27, 2008



While
BJP, the Hindu organisations and the Hindu fishermen’s outfit of Marad
sounded unhappy over Saturday’s special case verdict in the 2003
massacre case convicting 63 and acquitting 76 of the accused, other
political parties, especially the Muslim League, which received a lot
of social brickbats along with the NDF, reacted cautiously to the
judgement.

The prosecution refused to admit that there was no
conspiracy behind the massacre just because the court was not satisfied
with the proofs in this regard, counsels for the defendants said that
the verdict proved the police and the prosecution wrong and that the
imprisonment suffered by the 76 acquitted persons for the past
five-and-a-half years was a gross violation of human rights.

“Partial
justice has indeed been delivered,” said PS Sreedharan Pillai, a lawyer
and former State BJP president, responding to the verdict. “It is not
total justice. The fight for total justice for the victims of the
massacre would continue,” he said.

Pillai said that the UDF
which was in power when the massacre took place and the LDF which came
to power later had not respected the demand of the BJP, the Hindu
organisations and the Marad Araya Samajam for a Central probe into the
larger conspiracy aspect ion the case. “We wanted a comprehensive probe
to find out the actual conspiracy aspect. But this was sabotaged,” he
said.

The BJP leader said the UDF and the LDF did not want an
in-depth examination of the larger aspect – regarding the conspiracy,
external assistance, arms mobilisation and resource availability –
because it could lead to several leaders running for cover. Responding
to the acquittal of the 76 accused in the case, Pillai said the mere
acquittal by a court did not mean that it had been proved beyond doubt
that they were innocent.

State Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha
president also complained about non-delivery of total justice. He said
there was gross negligence from the part of the authorities in the
entire history of the case. He said they had never wanted to establish
the aspect of the larger conspiracy.

“Inspector General of
Police Mahesh Kumar Singhla, who headed the probe, had at the very
outset of the investigation said that there was no conspiracy involving
outside forces behind the massacre. Efforts to establish that there had
been no conspiracy behind the incident as there at the every
beginning,” he said.

“The court has said that the prosecution
had failed in establishing the conspiracy part. The judicial commission
on Marad had recommended a Central probe into this. The verdict
supports our demand for a CBI probe,” Surendran said. “The UDF and LDF
were firm that the political, external and economic relations of the
massacre should never come out,” Surendran said.

Former minister
PK Kunhalikkutty, State general secretary of the Indian Union Muslim
League, said he did not want to comment on the move for a probe into
the conspiracy behind the incident. “Let there be any kind of probe. We
do not mind. But the moves in this regard could be seen only as
political games,” he said.

About the complaint by a section that
the verdict had not delivered total justice, he said that it was
natural for the victims and their relatives of the massacre. “Everybody
is there to support to them. We all feel for them,” he said.

About
the nature of the Crime Branch investigation, he said it was a probe
without any prejudices. “The probe during the tenure of AK Antony as
Chief Minister was unbiased and accurate and the culprits were found
efficiently and quickly… Even the High Court had said that the
investigation was perfect,” he claimed.

Lawyer G Janardana
Kurup, chief counsel of the defendants, said the court could have found
strength in the flimsy evidences and arguments provided by the
Prosecution. “In my experience, I did not find any valid point in the
argument of the Prosecution. The court itself has said that there is no
proof of conspiracy,” he said.

“Judge Babu Mathew P Joseph could
be a man honoring high humanitarian values. But I am forced to suspect
that he could have committed some mistake,” Kurup said. He said gross
violation of basic human rights had been committed in the case of 76
persons, who had now been acquitted after imprisonment for more than
five years.

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