Violence continued unabated in many parts of Kerala on Saturday ever since two women in their 40s entered the Sabarimala hill temple even as the opposition BJP warned the state government and decided to parade its leaders, including PM Narendra Modi and party president Amit Shah in the state.
Though police began a clampdown on trouble-makers by arresting more than 3,000 people, orchestrated violence continued to cripple many areas.
In trouble-torn Kannur, notorious for red-saffron bloody clashes, houses of many, including an MLA and MP, were attacked on Friday night. Prohibitory orders were enforced in many areas to contain recurring violence.
The BJP has warned the state government to be ready to face the “constitutional consequences” for the violence unleashed against party worker on Sabarimala issue.
“We caution the CM to stop the mindless violence failing which the government will have to face serious consequences. You can’t let loose party goons on BJP workers like this,” said party spokesman G V L Narasimha Rao in New Delhi.
He contested the CM’s claim that the party worker in Pandalam died of cardiac failure and insisted he died in CPI(M) workers stone-pelting.
PM Modi will visit the state on January 15 and 27 and Shah in the first week of February, party sources said. The party president is likely to visit the house of Chandran Uniithan who died in alleged CPI(M) stone-pelting two days ago.
But the CPI(M) squarely blamed the Sangh Parivar outfits for the latest round of violence.
“Nobody can browbeat an elected government. The BJP-RSS are finding it difficult to cover humiliation they faced after women entered the temple. So their cadres are targeting party workers and offices,” said CPI(M) state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, adding Shah’s visit will only help widen the Communist base in the state.
North Kerala’s Kannur and central Kerala’s Pathanamhitta where the famous temple is situated bore the maximum brunt of violence. CPI(M) legislator A N Shamseer’s house was attacked and within hours, rivals retaliated by attacking the house of BJP Rajya Sabbha MP V Muralidharan in Thalassery.
A bomb blast was reported from Perambra in Kozhikode district, while a CPI (M) worker’s house was attacked. An office of the RSS was set on fire early on Saturday.
The sporadic incidents of violence since Friday night and early Saturday have left authorities worried and intelligence agencies have warned of more trouble.
Widespread violence had broken out on Thursday during a strike called by the Sabarimala Karma Samithi, an umbrella orgsnisation of Hindu groups, and supported by the BJP after the entry of two women — Bindu Ammini, 42, and Kanakadurga, 44 — into the temple on Wednesday.