Reacting to the allegations against the government about the planned encounter, CM Pinarayi said that the government never had intention to kill anyone.

Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan sitting at a dais
news Controversy Friday, November 06, 2020 - 08:52

Two days after a suspected Maoist was shot dead by the Kerala Police in a forest in Wayanad, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has come out stating that the police force only fired in self-defence. Reacting to the allegations against the government about the planned encounter, CM said that the government never had intention to kill anyone. CM, however, said that the matter will be probed as part of the investigation.

It was on November 3 that 33-year-old Tamil Nadu native Velmurugan was killed in the police firing at Banasura forest area in Padinjarathara police station limits in Wayanad. According to the police claims, a group of Maoists attacked the Thunderbolt team in between combing operations, and started firing at the police.

“The state government never had any intention to kill anyone and the preliminary report says the police fired in self-defence. The rest of the matter will be investigated," Pinarayi said.

Meanwhile, CM said Velmurugan was already booked under many cases, including one registered in Odisha for allegedly attacking and looting a police station there when he was 17 years old.

"There is another case of weapons training registered in Theni district. The Tamil Nadu government had declared a prize money of Rs 2 lakh for capturing him," Pinarayi said, adding that there was a non-bailable warrant against Velmurugan and he was absconding since being out on bail.

Meanwhile, the Communist Party of India (CPI), a major ally of the ruling Left Front government in Kerala, has sought a magisterial probe into the alleged encounter. "A civilised society cannot accept the killing of a person in the name of Maoist encounter," the CPI said in a statement. "The party does not accept the activities of the Maoists but cannot also accept that such persons are gunned down."

"The Maoists lack a foothold in the state because they lack the support of the civil society. The encounters with the Thunderbolt in the forest are highly condemnable," it added.

Leader of Opposition Ramesh Chennithala had earlier condemned the killing and sought an independent probe into the matter.

After the LDF government came into power, the state has witnessed deaths of seven Maoists in police firing. Last year in October, four Maoists -- Tamil Nadu natives Manivasakam, Karthi, Aravind and Rema -- were killed in an exchange of fire during a combing operation by the police in Palakkad district. In March that year, Maoist leader CP Jaleel was shot dead at a resort near Vythiri in Wayanad. Kuppuswamy Devaraj and Ajitha, were killed in an alleged encounter with police in Nilambur forests, in November 2016.

Read: Family of slain Maoist raises suspicions over numerous bullet wounds on the body

Watch video: Suspected Maoist killed in police firing in Kerala’s Wayanad

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