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CPM attacks on poll rivals on the rise

CPM attacks on poll rivals on the rise

Author: VR Jayaraj
Publication: The Pioneer
Date: April 13, 2009
URL: http://www.dailypioneer.com/169014/CPM-attacks-on-poll-rivals-on-the-rise.html

As the State is preparing to go to polls on April 16, the Kerala CPI(M) has stepped up attacks and threats against political enemies. At last four incidents of attacks and blockades on rival candidates and campaigners by suspected CPI(M) activists took place in Kerala even as fears mounted about possibility of violence during the coming days, especially in the Marxist heartland of Kannur.

TP Chandrasekharan and P Jayakumar, CPI(M) rebels contesting under the banner of Left Coordination Committee in Vadakara and Attingal Lok Sabha constituencies were blocked on way on Saturday, while the vehicle of AP Abdullakkutty MP, expelled recently from the CPI(M), came under attack on Thursday night. The house of former minister Cherkalam Abdullah, who was also the Kasaragod district president of the Muslim League, also came under attack on Friday.

Chandrasekharan, leader of the Marxist Party, which the expelled CPI(M) rebels formed to take on that party, was blocked on the road in Thalassery Assembly segment of the Vadakara constituency on Saturday. Left Coordination Committee sources said that about 40 CPI(M) workers blocked Chandrasekharan while he was on a campaign tour.

The trouble-makers destroyed the boards of the candidate mounted on the vehicle and torn away the flags on it. An attempt was also made to manhandle the candidate but timely intervention by his colleagues foiled this. Chandrasekharan was the mightiest leader of the CPI(M) rebels in north Malabar.

Thalassery, known as a Marxist fortress for its rule by terror for more than the past three decades, was being represented in the State Assembly by Home Minister and Polit Bureau member Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, famous for his reported statement that the CPI(M) would even make bombs in police stations if need be.

Chandrasekharan's colleagues said the attack was aimed at intimidating him and forcing him to withdraw from active campaigning as he was sure to cause a big dent and even the defeat of P Satheedevi, CPI(M) candidate in Vadakara. The rebels led by Chandrasekharan in Vadakara was believed to poll a minimum of 50,000 votes, which could lead to the defeat of the Marxist aspirant, as the Janata Dal (S) also was campaigning against her.

Satheedevi, who had bagged the highest majority of 130,589 votes in Kerala in the 2004 elections from Vadakara, was the sister of P Jayarajan, MLA from Koothuparamba in Kannur, sharing the status of Thalassery as a Marxist terror centre. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had time and again alleged that Jayarajan was one of the terror architects of Kannur CPI(M).

The vehicle of Left Coordination Committee candidate in Attingal constituency at Vattappara was attacked when he was on a campaign tour on Saturday. His colleagues said the attack was perpetrated by CPI(M) workers as part of a tactic to force him to withdraw from campaigning as the Marxists wanted to win that seat at any cost. A CPI(M) State secretariat meeting earlier in the week had identified Attingal as one of the five seats the party was sure to win out of the 14 it was contesting in the State.

The car of Abdullakkutty, sitting MP from Kannur, came under stoning while he was returning from a UDF election meeting on Thursday. Abdullakkutty, after his recent expulsion from the CPI(M) for praising the development model of Narendra Modi, had been campaigning for the United Democratic Front candidates.

The MP also received a death threat over the phone on Saturday while he was speaking at a United Democratic Front election meeting in Ernakulam. The caller did not identify himself but threatened Abdullakkutty saying his head would be chopped off if he appeared in Mattannur, Kannur, to campaign for the UDF.

Meanwhile, former minister and Muslim League leader Cherkalam Abdullah refused to lodge a complaint with the police for an attack on his house in Kasaragod on early Friday morning. The police registered a case suo moto. Abdullah said he did not want to file a complaint because the LDF Government's police had not taken any action on the complaint he lodged when his house was attacked sometime ago.

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