CPM-BJP clash in Kerala turns sour

CPM-BJP clash in Kerala turns sour

CPM-BJP clash in Kerala turns sour

The tension between activists of the ruling CPM and BJP in Thiruvananthapuram intensified with clashes and a late night attack led by a CPM ward councillor on the BJP state committee office here.

In suspected retaliation, the residence of Bineesh Kodiyeri, son of CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, was also attacked. Prohibitory orders were clamped in the city for three days.

CCTV footage from the BJP office in Kunnukuzhi showed a group of five men arriving on motorbikes around 1.15 am on Friday, hurling stones and damaging five vehicles parked at the office where the party’s state president Kummanam Rajasekharan was spending the night.

Kummanam’s car was also damaged in the attack. The attack took place in the presence of four policemen on duty.

A police constable who tried to stop the attackers was injured in the incident. The video footage shows the constable being assaulted as he tries to note down the registration number of one of the motorbikes the attackers used.

The police arrested four people, including I P Binu, CPM ward councillor from Kunnukuzhi, and Prajin, district secretary of the CPM-affiliated Students Federation of India, in connection with the incident. Two policemen, who failed to intervene during the attack, were suspended.

About two hours after the attack on the BJP office, unidentified men attacked the residence of Bineesh Kodiyeri, damaging the windows of the house and two vehicles.

With the tension between the two political camps prevailing in some pockets of Thiruvananthapuram, more policemen have been deployed near party offices and in vulnerable areas.

A series of violent incidents was triggered by confrontations between the student wings of the two parties and clashes between the two camps in Kattakkada on the outskirts of the city.

The tension escalated late on Thursday, leading to attacks on the homes of ward councillors and local leaders of both the CPM and BJP, in the Manacaud and Chalai areas of the city.

Kodiyeri Balakrishnan condemned the attack on the BJP office and said CPM members involved in the attack will be suspended, but maintained that the trigger to the clashes was the violence unleashed by BJP and RSS workers on CPM activists.

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