A day after an RSS worker was hacked to death in Kannur, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan called the incident unfortunate. The CM also held that the murder will not stop peace talks between members of the BJP and CPI(M) being held in Kannur. The BJP meanwhile, brought life to a standstill with a hartal in Kannur over the murder of Biju.
8 workers of the BJP and RSS have been murdered ever since CPI(M) came to power in Kerala in May 2016. The dawn to dusk Hartal call given by the BJP affected regular life in Kannur and Mahe. Private buses, as well as government-run KSRTC buses, stayed off roads. Offices and shops remained shut. The state government that had initially planned to have additional buses from the KSRTC ultimately decided to suspend regular service as well.
At least 7 workers of the CPI(M) have been booked by the police over Biju's murder which is suspected to be a retaliatory attack. Biju was an accused in the murder case of Dhanaraj, a CPI(M) worker who was hacked in 2016. "This is an unfortunate incident but is also a one-off incident. All culprits will be arrested. This will not affect the efforts to bring peace to the district," Pinarayi Vijayan said. He is likely to visit Kannur on Saturday to take stock of the situation.
Considering the volatile situation, security has been beefed up in Kannur especially Payyannur. Dozens of policemen have been deployed to patrol roads even as shops and establishments remained closed. The BJP deemed it an act of 'leftists terror' and accused the CPI(M) government of encouraging political murders by turning a blind eye towards them.
The Kerala BJP unit Chief K Rajasekharan claimed that CPI(M) workers celebrated the murder of the RSS activist and shared a video of the reported celebration on twitter.