Expressing displeasure at the way four Maoists was gunned down in the forests near here this week by the Thunderbolt wing of the Kerala Police, the Communist Party of India (CPI) state leadership on Friday condemned the act as one that was “state-sponsored” and sought a magisterial probe.
Incidentally, the CPI is the second biggest ally of the ruling Left government led by Pinarayi Vijayan and right from the day of the incident, the CPI has condemned the act of the police.
A team of CPI leaders led by two legislators and party assistant secretary K. Prakash Babu, despite being asked to refrain from going into the deep forests to the site where the shooting took place, on Friday visited the area, to assess the situation on what happened.
Babu and his team walked close to three kilometres to reach the place and after going around the place told the media, that what they expected has taken place.
“This was no encounter at all between the police and the Maoists. The four who were shot dead had bullet injuries on their back and the head. This clearly shows that it was nothing but a fake encounter. If it was a real encounter, one will be easily able to find out bullet marks on trees and such places. Just look at this place where we stand, does it signify an encounter having taken place here. This is nothing but a state-sponsored act of gunning down people,” said Babu, who is a former legislator.
“This is in no way acceptable. We demand a magisterial probe as a probe by the police won’t bring out anything. The need of the hour is to rein in the police who just cannot be allowed to act like this,” added Babu.
Meanwhile, at the state secretariat meeting of the CPI-M, held in the state capital on Friday, Vijayan informed about what happened and according to sources in the party, many in the CPI-M are upset at the way the Left government is tackling the Maoists.
Since this Left government assumed office in 2016, eight Maoists have been gunned down, while during the rule of the Congress’ Oommen Chandy two Maoists were arrested in a joint operation from neighbouring states.
According to the police, the person killed on Tuesday was a top Maoist from Tamil Nadu, Mani Vasakam, while among those brought down on Monday, two hailed from Karnataka — Sreemathi and Suresh — and Karthi was from Tamil Nadu.
The Congress-led opposition also have condemned the killings.