The prohibitory orders under Section 144 of CrPC in Kerala's Alappuzha district has been extended till 6 pm on December 22, the district collector said on Monday evening.
This comes after back-to-back killings of two party leaders, the first belonging to the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) and the second to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
In the first case, K S Shan, state secretary of SDPI, was murdered on Saturday night after his bike was knocked down by a car. On falling down, the assailants, numbering five, attacked him with swords and other weapons.
A grievously hurt Shan was rushed to the hospital and emergency surgeries were performed on him, but the doctors could not save his life.
SDPI alleged that the murder was committed by RSS elements. The two organisations have a history of attacking each other, the previous instance having been the murder of an RSS leader in faraway Palakkad district.
Within hours of Shan’s murder, BJP leader Ranjith Srinivasan was murdered in his house when he was about to leave for his morning walk. He was killed in the presence of his family members.
A BJP candidate in the assembly election, Srinivasan was the district chief of OBC Morcha, an affiliate of BJP, and a practising advocate.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan denounced both murders and described these as inhuman and as a threat to Kerala’s society. He called upon the people to foil the efforts of marauding elements and their agendas of hate, which were detrimental to the state’s progress.
Governor Arif Mohammed Khan said he was feeling ashamed of the incidents. He appealed to all parties concerned to have faith in democracy and civilised behaviour.
Leader of Opposition V D Satheesan attributed the killings to the failure of the state government and the police and said these were part of a sinister move to disturb peace and communal harmony.
Union minister of state V Muraleedharan described the murder of the BJP activist as the handiwork of an ‘Islamic terrorist group’. He accused the state government of taking a soft stand towards Islamic terrorists which ‘encouraged them to indulge in more violence.’
BJP state president K Surendran claimed that his party had acted with great restraint in the wake of the murder of the RSS leader in Palakkad and suggested that the murder of the SDPI leader could be the result of hostility between the SDPI and the CPI-M.
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