Congress alleges secret CPI(M)-RSS pact behind acquittal of RSS workers; urges CM to reply

The accused in court premises, slain muezzin Riyas Maulavi
The accused in court premises, slain muezzin Riyas Maulavi

Thiruvananthapuram/Kasaragod | Congress on Sunday slammed the Left government over the recent acquittal of three RSS activists in a case relating to the murder of a madrassa teacher inside a mosque seven years ago.

Accusing the police and the prosecution of handling the case poorly, the opposition party sought to know if they were released as part of a "secret agreement" between the RSS and CPI(M) for the Lok Sabha polls.

Leader of Opposition in the state Assembly V D Satheesan and KPCC acting president M M Hassan urged Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, who handles the Home portfolio, to explain the circumstances that led to the acquittal of the RSS activists.

The government, however, made it clear that they would approach the High Court against the verdict pronounced by the Principal Sessions Court in Kasaragod yesterday.

The Director General of Prosecution and the Home Department are initiating required steps, they said.

Mohammed Riyas Maulavi, a 34-year-old muezzin (a person who proclaims the Islamic call to prayer) and a madrassa teacher from Choori near Kasaragod, was found murdered in his room in the mosque on March 20, 2017.

His throat was allegedly slit by a gang which had entered the compound of Muhayuddin Juma masjid of Choori.

The court in its order said the prosecution was not able to prove the accused had any kind of enmity with the Muslim community.

"The CM should react to the serious lapses made by the police and the prosecution as the court itself has intensely criticised the investigation," Hassan said.

In a statement, he also asked if the circumstances that led to the release of RSS activists happened due to a "secret agreement" between the right wing outfit and the Marxist party.

Satheesan also levelled similar criticism against the police investigation and prosecution in the case and said that they made serious lapses "with the knowledge of the ruling leadership".

It was the responsibility of the police and prosecution to ensure maximum punishment for the accused in the brutal murder, he told reporters in Kasaragod.

He said the court itself observed in the verdict that the investigation carried out in the case was "sub-standard and unilateral".

The LoP claimed that a conspiracy had been hatched to protect the RSS workers allegedly involved in the crime.

Satheesan alleged that the government failed to ensure punishment to the accused in such a crucial case and that the higher-ups were also responsible for that.

State law minister P Rajeeve rejected the opposition charges and said the recent order of the trial court was generally viewed as the "rarest of the rare" verdict and assured that the government would approach the High Court against it.

"In the first glance, it evokes suspicion whether the seven findings in the 133 page- verdict were enough for the acquittal of the accused. The Director General of Prosecution is examining this," he told reporters here.

He also claimed that a remarkable and scientific probe was carried out into the brutal incident.

Meanwhile, Kasaragod Town Police registered a case against three people for allegedly airing provocative comments regarding the incident on the YouTube channel of a prominent Malayalam news channel.

"The three YouTube account holders were booked under Section 153A of the Indian Penal Code today. Further action will be initiated against them after collecting their details," a police officer told PTI.

Section 153A of the IPC refers to promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc., and carrying out acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony.

A court on Saturday acquitted three RSS activists in a case relating to the murder of the madrassa teacher inside a mosque in the district in 2017.

Kasaragod Principal Sessions Court Judge K K Balakrishnan acquitted Akhilesh, Nidhin, and Ajesh, all three residents of Kelugude, in the case.

The accused spent seven years in jail without bail.

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