CPM leaders found guilty in Kerala murder case

CPM state secretary Pinarayi Vijayan said that with the verdict, the cruel act of tarnishing the party by certain vested interests has fallen flat.

By T K Devasia

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Published: Thu 23 Jan 2014, 8:44 PM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 12:52 AM

Three members of Kerala’s opposition Communist Party of India (Marxist) and nine others have been found guilty by a special court in Calicut in the case related to the brutal murder of party rebel T P Chandrashekharan.

The conviction of P K Kunhanandan and Manoj alias Trouser Manojan, members of the Panur area committee and Kadanganpoyil local committee in Kannur district and K C Ramachandran, member of Kunnumakkara local committee in Calicut district for conspiracy disproves the party’s claim that it had no involvement in the murder.

Reacting to the verdict, CPM state secretary Pinarayi Vijayan said that with the verdict, the cruel act of tarnishing the party by certain vested interests has fallen flat.

“Yes, there are a few others of the party who have been now found guilty and we do not think Kunjuanandan has any role in the case. Anyway, now we will look into the issue and go ahead with legal procedures,” Vijayan said.

Vijayan termed the acquittal of party’s Calicut district secretariat member P Mohanan and three other members as the ultimate acquittal of the party itself. Special Additional District and Sessions Court judge R Narayana Pisharadi due to lack of sufficient evidence against them.

The prosecution case was that Chandrashekharan was hacked to death by a seven-member gang hired by the CPM near Onchiyam on May 4, 2012 after he quit the party and floated a parallel outfit questioning the ideological deviations in the party.

The others convicted in the case are killers M.C. Anoop, Kirmani Manoj, N.K. Sunil Kumar aka Kodi Suni, T.K. Rajeesh, K.K. Mohammed Shafi, Annan Shijith and K. Shinoj and P.V. Rafeeque and M.K. Pradeepan aka Lambu, who helped the gang in committing the murder. The court will pronounce the quantum of punishment on Thursday.

Besides Mohanan, others acquitted are Onchiyam area committee member K K Krishnan and member of Onchiyam local committee, M K Raveendran alias Padayamkandi Raveendran and party office secretary Jyothi Babu.

The court had acquitted 20 accused in September last year. The high court stayed the trial of 15 accused. Two accused are still absconding while one died during the trial of the case. The prosecution case was weakened after 52 of the 164 witnesses turned hostile during the trial.

K.K. Rema, wife of the slain leader said that she was “not fully satisfied” with the verdict. However, the verdict exposed the role of the CPM in Calicut and Kannur districts in hatching a plot to kill Chandrasekharan.

She said the leaders from the two districts, who had nothing against her husband, was connected by the party leadership as per their fascist policy of not allowing their opponents to engage in politics.

Rema said she would go for an appeal against the acquittal of the other CPM leaders and also press for a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to bring to book other top leaders involved in the conspiracy.

Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala said the government would consider the demand. He said that the CPM secretary’s argument that the party had no role in the murder had no logic. Public prosecutor C K Sreedharan said they have a strong case against the CPM leaders and would establish it in the appeal court.

Leader of opposition V S Achuthanandan, who refused to buy the party stand in the case, has reserved his reaction over the verdict. He said he will comment on it after studying the full judgment. He had called Chandrashekharan a true communist in a comment on the eve of the verdict.


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