Congress divided over mode of protest after actor Joju George manhandling incident

While party state president endorses the road blockade, Oppn leader against protests blocking traffic

Published: 02nd November 2021 06:08 AM  |   Last Updated: 02nd November 2021 06:08 AM   |  A+A-

Vehicles caught in a traffic jam at Vyttila in Kochi on Monday following the blockade organised by District Congress Committee against the high fuel prices | Arun Angela

By Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Congress in the state seemed to be a divided house following the clash between actor Joju George and Congress protestors during the party’s road blockade against the fuel price hike in Ernakulam on Monday. While state unit president K Sudhakaran rallied behind the protestors, Opposition leader V D Satheesan and national general secretary (organisation) K C Venugopal objected to the mode of protest which caused inconvenience to the people.  

Following the violent protest at Vyttila, Sudhakaran called up Ernakulam district Congress chief Mohammed Shiyas who apprised him of the situation and blamed the actor. This led Sudhakaran to unleash a tirade against Joju accusing him of being a “criminal” who acted like a goon. 

Rallying behind the Congress protesters, Sudhakaran said the actor’s car came under attack because of public fury. Speaking to reporters here after the statewide launch of the party membership campaign, Sudhakaran said it is the right of political parties to hold protests. “It is the Opposition’s responsibility to hold protests against the fuel price hike which affects the common man adversely. Congress does not hold protests unnecessarily. If the police don’t take action against Joju, the party will intensify its protest against him,” said Sudhakaran. 

However, Satheesan was cautious in his comments to the media here. He said personally, he is against protests blocking traffic as these cause hardships to the motorists and pedestrians alike.  “I had informed the Ernakulam district Congress leadership about my strong dissent against the protest mode which causes inconvenience to people. We will probe the matter,” said Satheesan. Taking to his Facebook account later, Sudhakaran said the fuel price hike may not affect the rich, in a veiled attack on the actor, but the case of the poor is different. 

Detailed probe
With a large number of netizens and the DYFI leadership turning their ire on the Congress, K C Venugopal evinced hope that the state party leadership will initiate a detailed probe


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