Kannur should not be allowed to bleed again

Violence is embedded in Kannur politics and no party is free of it—with the CPI(M) on one side, and the RSS, Congress and the IUML on the other.
In all such incidents, innocents have lost life or limb without having anything to do with politics.
In all such incidents, innocents have lost life or limb without having anything to do with politics.Representational image

A 90-year-old man was recently killed in a blast in Kerala’s Kannur district when he unwittingly tried to open a bomb he found in his neighbour’s uninhabited plot. He had apparently gone there to collect coconuts when his eyes fell on the steel container. He suffered fatal injuries to his head and his hands were shattered by the blast. The police, who have started an investigation, say the blast was accidental.

Though the bomb squad, which conducted a thorough inspection of the site, could not find any other bomb there, a few neighbours have alleged that the uninhabited plot has been used for criminal activities by political parties. They alleged that the police usually arrive at the scene of an explosion only after party workers have erased evidence and removed the crude bombs. Similar allegations have been raised by the Congress-led opposition—they staged a walkout in the assembly condemning the “cult of crude bomb violence” in Kannur.

It’s not the first time that innocent people are getting caught in the state’s political bomb culture. Amavasi, a rag-picker from Tamil Nadu, was injured in an accidental blast in Kannur in October 1998; he lost sight in one eye as a result. In September 2000, Asna, a girl who was playing in her house compound, lost a leg to a bomb blast. In all such incidents, innocents have lost life or limb without having anything to do with politics.

Violence is embedded in Kannur politics and no party is free of it—with the CPI(M) on one side, and the RSS, Congress and the IUML on the other. All parties have had ‘martyrs’ who are celebrated at political functions. The culture of violence can be brought down only if this political narrative is rephrased. And for this, all parties must come together.

They should decide not to let Kannur bleed again. The CPI(M), being the ruling party, has more responsibility to ensure it. The government must ensure a detailed probe into the matter and the culprits must be brought to book for killing an elderly person in such a brutal manner. Kannur has been bleeding for quite a long time—it is time to put an end to it.

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