A local Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) functionary was hacked to death at Payyannur in Kannur district on Friday evening, leading to tension in the area. Police said Choorakkadu Bjiu (34), an RSS karya vahak of Ramanthaly mandal in Kannur, was riding a bike when he was knocked down by an SUV. Some people jumped out of the SUV and allegedly hacked him several times. Biju died on the spot. Tension was prevailing in and around Payyannur following the murder. The BJP blamed the ruling CPM for the murder, and called a hartal in the district on Saturday.
State BJP president Kummanam Rajasekharan said Chief Minister Pinarayi VIjayan should answer for the killing. “The CPM has proved that peace will not prevail in Kannur. CPM criminals are unleashing violence in Kannur with the support of police and the government. Kannur should be declared a disturbed region under the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act,’’ he said.
Kannur CPM district secretary P Jayarajan said his party had no role in Biju’s murder. “The CPM strongly condemns the murder. The party has been maintaining utmost restraint despite several incidents of provocation from the BJP-RSS side, and has taken initiative for peace in the district. A detailed probe should be conducted to find the real culprits,” said a release from the party district secretariat.
A painter by profession, Biju was an accused in the murder of CPM leader C V Dhanaraj last July. It was only last month that Biju was released on bail. “He had not faced any perceptible threat after being released. However, prima facie, this is suspected to be a retaliatory murder,’’ a police source said.
After the CPM came to power in Kerala last May, Kannur district witnessed eight political murders, two of them this year. Of the victims, five have been BJP-RSS workers. After the murder of BJP activist Ezhuthan Santhosh this January, the government had convened an all-party meeting which decided to isolate criminal elements. Both CPM and BJP had pledged not to support violent politics.