KOLLAM: With hours remaining for the first phase of local body election, the murder of a middle-aged CPM worker in Munroe Island in Kollam has become a major political issue. A 50-year-old man from the district was stabbed to death on Sunday night. Manilal, a native of Munroe Island and a CPM activist, was allegedly stabbed by Ashokan, a local. Ashokan was taken into custody. The CPM has alleged that RSS was behind the murder.
The CPM will observe hartal in five panchayats in Kollam district on Monday in protest of Manilal's murder. The hartal will be held in Munroethuruth, East Kallada, Perayam, Kundara and Perinad panchayats from 1 pm to 4 pm.
The CPM leaders have come out with the allegation that the killing of Manilal was part of an RSS conspiracy. However, the BJP district leaders denied the allegation and said that personal issues between the duo led to the murder. They also said that the CPM was trying to create an unnecessary controversy before the panchayat elections as Ashokan is not associated with RSS or BJP.
However, East Kallada police, who are investigating the case, is yet to confirm if political vengeance was behind the murder. According to the police, there was an altercation between the two which ended up in a murder and it seems more like a family dispute rather than a political murder. Manilal was rushed to a private medical college hospital in Kollam, but could not be rescued.
Police have arrested Ashokan, 54, a native of Pattamthuruth, in connection with Manilal's murder. Ashokan's friend Sathyan, is also in police custody in connection with the case. The accused, who went into hiding following the crime, was arrested late on Sunday night.
Manilal was running a homestay called Mayukham and Asokan is an acquaintance of Manilal.