As protests over the arrest of two law students under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act mounts in Kerala, the Opposition on Monday questioned the government in the state legislative Assembly. The Congress asked how someone can be called a Maoist solely for possession of pro Maosists brochures. Two law students Alan Suhaib and Thaha Fazal were arrested on Friday night under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and the police alleged that they had links with Maoists.
An adjournment motion was moved by Congress leader Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan in the Legislative Assembly on Monday. Thiruvanchoor, notably, is also a former Home Minister of the state.
Responding to the adjournment motion, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said that Maoists leaflets were found in Alan Suhaib's bag and a pro Maoist book was found from Thaha Fazal's house. The Chief Minister also said that Thaha Fazal raised pro-Maoists slogan when the police came to arrest him. He, however, added that the government will not allow UAPA to be misused.
“The Left government has always been cautious to not misuse UAPA. The current government has quashed six cases under UAPA. Congress who backed the BJP for introducing this dark act should not don the role of protectors of human rights,” he said.
Thiruvanchoor countered this asking how someone can be branded Maoists solely for possessing pro-Maoists brochures. He also questioned how he CM can give assurances on inspecting the use of UAPA in case that is already subjudice.
Pinarayi also rejected accusations that Thunderbolt commandos had staged a fake encounter against alleged Maoists in Manjeekandi near Attappadi in Palakkad.
"It was not a fake encounter and they did not come to surrender. There is no need to portray Maoists as lambs," he said.
But the Congress persisted and asked the government to explain why Maoist leader Manivasakam was shot in the head. "The others were gunned down from the back. What action has been taken against the police who killed the Maoists?” Thiruvanchoor asked.
Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala who is also a former Home Minister said that the Chief Minister was guilty of killing seven people (the number of suspected Maoists killed after the present government assumed power).