A youth congress worker Shuhaib was hacked to death on Monday night by a group of unidentified men at Mattanur in Kannur. The incident occurred around 11.30 pm on Monday, when Shuhaib, Naushad and Riyad were out in the Mattanur area. A group of four men first threw a bomb at the trio, and later slashed Shuhaib with a sword. Both Riyad and Naushad were injured in the incident.
Though Shuhaib was immediately taken to a nearby hospital, he later succumbed to his injuries at the Kozhikode Medical college hospital.
Shuhaib, who was 29 years old, was the Mattanur block secretary. This is the 21st political murder that has taken place in Kerala after Pinarayi Vijayan assumed office in 2016.
While the survivors of the attack allege that the crime was committed by CPI (M) workers, the Left leadership has denied the charges. However, adding to the charges, a video of CPI (M) workers raising slogans against the deceased has been doing the rounds now. In the video, CPI (M) workers can be seen shouting "your days have been numbered" at Shuhaib.
Mattanur police have registered a case under IPC sections 341 (Punishment for wrongful restraint), 324 (Voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons or means), 307 (Attempt to murder), 302 r/w 34 and section 3 & 5 of explosive act.
â€śThe case is registered based on Riyadâ€™s statement, who said that the attackers were four CPI (M) workers. He has also added that he can identify them,â€ť a police official said.
Strongly condemning the incident, the Congress party has hit out at the CPI (M), claiming this was retaliation for Shuhaibâ€™s tiff with CPI (M) workers in Kannur in January, over student politics.
Kannur district Congress party chief Sateeshan Pacheni said, â€śCongress party workers had ruffled feathers of the CPI (M) leadership recently, and Shuhaib was at the forefront of this incident. Since then the CPI (M) had announced publicly that his days are numbered.â€ť
Congress leader Ramesh Chennithala further pointed fingers at the police for not checking political violence.
"The police in Kannur is a mute spectator, as the CPI (M) is in control of everything. They are striking at will to eliminate their political rivals in the most inhumane manner. We have appealed to all our workers in Kannur to see that they remain calm," said Chennithala, who is reaching Kannur on Thursday.
CPI (M) has however denied these allegations. CPI (M) Kannur district secretary P Jayarajan said, "We will look into what has happened, and if any of our party members are involved, then appropriate action will be taken. But what we are told is that our party has no role in it."
In the wake of the incident, the Congress party has called for a dawn-to-dusk shut down in Kannur on Tuesday, but has said that vehicles will be allowed to ply.