In an embarrassment to the Congress, four of its workers were arrested on Friday for allegedly damaging a Mahatma Gandhi portrait kept at party MP Rahul Gandhi’s office in Kerala.
The incident occurred on June 24, when members of the CPM student wing SFI vandalised the Congress MP’s office in Wayanad. During the mayhem, Mahatma Gandhi’s portrait was found pulled down from the office wall. While Congress alleged that SFI men had damaged the portrait, the CPM always blamed it on Congress workers.
The arrested Congress men were identified as V Noushad, K A Mujeeb, S R Rahul and K R Ratheesh Kumar. Kumar is Rahul’s office assistant. The Opposition party termed the arrests as politically motivated.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan told the Assembly on July 2 that police had removed all SFI men who had stormed into the MP office by around 3.54 pm. When a police photographer clicked photos of the crime scene, the Gandhi portrait was found intact on the wall, he said, adding that Congress activists were inside the office after the SFI workers were removed. Later in the evening, when the police photographer took photos of the crime scene again, the portrait was found lying on the floor in a damaged condition, Vijayan said, citing the photographer’s statement to police.
While the CPM alleged that Congress workers who entered the office after the mayhem threw the portrait on the ground, the Congress always evaded queries about it.
Opposition leader V D Satheesan, during his visit to Wayanad after the attack, refused to entertain questions on the allegation that his party’s workers had damaged the Gandhi portrait.