On June 24, Students Federation of India (SFI) activists took out a protest march towards the Wayanad MP’s office here on the Eco-Sensitive Zone (ESZ) issue.
A Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the case arrested the four after summoning them for interrogation.They were later released on bail, a senior police officer said. The arrested people were charged under Indian Penal Code (IPC) section 153 (wantonly giving provocation with intent to cause riot).
Congress leader and Kalpetta MLA T Siddique said two of the arrested persons were staff of Rahul Gandhi’s office – one Personal Assistant and a helper – while two others were party workers.
Strongly protesting against the arrest, he alleged that the charges against the Congress workers were fabricated. “The arrest was done with the complete knowledge of chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan. He took such a step to appease the BJP-led Centre,” Siddique alleged.
KPCC president K Sudhakaran alleged the police action against Congress workers was “a part of a conspiracy centered around the chief minister’s office”.
“Kerala government and police are taking the approach of making the plaintiff the accused. The arrest is politically motivated. The chief minister should clarify on what evidence the innocent Congress workers were arrested. Even before the police investigation started, the chief minister had announced that the accused were Congressmen,” Sudhakaran said in a statement.
CPM leader and state PWD minister P A Muhammed Riyas said Congress should take disciplinary action against its workers who damaged Gandhi’s photo and put the blame on SFI workers. Congress had alleged that the photo of Mahatma Gandhi, was damaged during the vandalism of the Wayanad MP’s office at Kalpetta allegedly by SFI activists on June 24.