The protest at Keezhattur in Kannur against authorities grabbing paddy fields from farmers to build a bypass road assumed more significance on Thursday with several politicians choosing to become more vocal about the issue.
Bharatiya Janata Party State President Kummanam Rajasekharan met with Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan with regard to filling up 250 acres of paddy fields for the roadworks project.
The team, headed by Rajasekaran, also demanded that even if farmers chose to give up their land, it shouldn’t be filled up.
Meanwhile, Communist Party of India (Marxist) state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan said that the National Highways Authority should decide if the bypass was needed or not.
“It is not Pinarayi Vijayan or G Sudhakaran who decided to build the bypass. The National HIghways Authority, under the Union government, made the decision,” he said in Kannur on Thursday. “The RSS is trying to sabotage the Left government. It is the RSS that will exaggerate small protests like that in Keezhattur. Just because one Nandigram happened, don’t try to make every place like Nandigram.”
On Thursday, Suresh Keezhattur, who leads the Vayalkkilikal group that spearheads the protests, alleged that two men came on bikes on Wednesday night and attacked his house.
In the press meet organised, he said, “ At this point, we will accept support from anyone, even the BJP and SDPI.”
The BJP accused the CPI(M) of attacking Suresh’s house, and the CPI(M) claimed a BJP hand in the attack.
“We have no reason to attack Suresh’s house. We are the ones who declared support for the protests in the first place,” said P Sathyaprakash, BJP’s Kannur district secretary.
The CPI(M) will take out a march to Keezhattur against Vayalkkilikal in an attempt to protest against the agitators. Vayalkkilikal, on the other hand, is set to intensify their protests.