Fifty people have been arrested in connection with the violence in Kerala‚Äôs Kizhakkambalam, where violence broke out between workers at the Kitex garments factory on Saturday during Christmas celebrations. When police were called to the area, they were allegedly attacked by the workers, leading to at least five officers being injured and a police jeep being set on fire. The workers predominantly hail from Jharkhand, West Bengal and the North East, police officials said. About 150 workers were detained; the cause of the clash is yet to be ascertained.
The incident occurred at a housing camp built for the workers by Kitex. According to reports, the police have booked the arrested under 11 charges, including attempt to murder and destruction of public property. "Fifty workers have been arrested so far and have been produced at the court. We are verfitying details of some other workers whom we suspect were involved in the clash," a police personnel with the Kunnathunad police station told TNM.
‚ÄúThe workers brutally assaulted the police officers, including a Circle Inspector, who had reached the spot to resolve the arguments between two groups of labourers on Saturday night,‚ÄĚ the company‚Äôs Managing Director Sabu Jacob told the media on Sunday, December 26. He added that when the violence first broke out, camp security tried to intervene, but were allegedly attacked by the workers, after which the police were called to the area. However, the workers allegedly attacked the police officials as well, which forced them to retreat and leave two of their vehicles behind, one of which was set on fire.
Sabu Jacob also said that there was no criminal intent behind the incident, and that he suspected some of the workers to have been under the influence of narcotics. He also said that CCTV visuals would be used to identify those involved in the attack, and sought exemplary action against the accused, Mathrubhumi reported.