After she sat before the Kerala Secretariat for 22 days on a hunger strike, the state government has finally decided to offer Rs 10 lakh as compensation to Viji, wife of late Sanal Kumar, who died following a spat with a DySP in November. Addressing the media, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan announced the cabinet decision to hand over the money to Viji.
Vijiâ€™s husband Sanal Kumar died on November 5 after he was pushed in front of a moving vehicle by DySP B Harikumar, who was in charge of Neyyatinkkara police station. Following his death, several politicians including two cabinet ministers and the local MLA, had promised compensation to the bereaved family.
However, the government failed to deliver on its promise even months after his demise and Viji and her sons found it hard to make ends meet. After several futile attempts to meet the CM and asking for monetary compensation of Rs 35 lakh to pay off Sanalâ€™s debts, Viji finally decided to protest in front of the Secretariat last month. Observing the protest silently, which she said was more of a plea than a fight, Viji requested for a government job and compensation to raise her kids.
The 26-year-old and her two children finally called off the 22-day protest on the last day of 2018, after the CSI church intervened and held discussions with the Chief Ministerâ€™s Office (CMO). After discussions, the CMO partly agreed to the demands raised by Viji.
On Tuesday, Vijiâ€™s father Varghese had told TNM that the government had offered Rs 15 lakh, which is usually the amount offered in such cases. The church, however, assured Viji that they would be receiving more.
There was an Akshaya pathram (collection box) which was kept at the protest venue near the Secretariat and approximately Rs 50,000 was collected in this. Further, actor and BJP MP Suresh Gopi too had visited the family and contributed Rs 3 lakh.
Besides this, GR Public School in Neyyattinkara has offered to sponsor the education of her two sons - aged four and three - up to class 12. Varghese had told TNM that they have already taken admission in the school.