THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The gruesome murder of Revolutionary Marxist Party (RMP) leader T P Chandrasekharan will prominently figure in the UDF poll campaign in Neyyattinkara as the political violence allegedly unleashed by CPM in the state will form the core of the UDF campaign.
While BJP holds the UDF Government equally responsible for the murder, accusing it of inaction in providing protection to the slain leader, the CPM is trying to cling on to its claim that it was the result of a conspiracy hatched by the UDF leaders in the wake of the Neyyattinkara bypoll.
Already, Union Minister Vayalar Ravi, who campaigned for UDF candidate R Selvaraj, attacked CPM for what he called its fascist approach and said that the verdict of the bypoll would be a befitting reply to the CPM.
The UDF, which was trying hard to refute the CPM allegation that Selvaraj came out of the party as a result of horse-trading, is now shifting its focus to the Onchiyam murder to counter its rivals.
UDF candidate R Selvaraj said that now everyone must have realised what he said while leaving the CPM was true and the people of Neyyattinkara would stand by him as the CPM had moved away from the people.
"Me and my family had threat to life from the CPM and I have declared it in open. Now, with the killing of Chandrashekaran, it has become clear to what extent a party like the CPM would go in silencing those opposing its stand. If you read together the statement of Kodiyeri Balakrishnan that the CPM was about to take action against me and the killing of CPM rebel Chandrashekaran it would be evident that they hatched a plan to eliminate me as well,’’ Selvaraj told ‘Express’.
CPM candidate F Lawrence said that the UDF leaders were trying to tarnish the image of the CPM by blaming it for the murder of Chandrasekharan which was totally baseless and the electorate of Neyyattinkara would understand it. "From the closed-door discussions KPCC president Ramesh Chennithala had with senior police officials and the way the Congress leaders had reacted to the murder it was evident that there was a conspiracy to drag the CPM into it. The UDF was hoping to wean away one more MLA from the Left fold which did not happen. The people of Neyyattinkara are closely watching all the developments and they know that it was a conspiracy of the UDF to draw the public attention away from the horse-trading charges,’’ Lawrence said.
BJP candidate O Rajagopal demanded that the State Government should give compensation to the family of Chandrasekharan and added that the issue would not reflect in the electoral outcome.
"Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and Union Minister Mullappally Ramachandran declared in open that Chandrasekharan had conveyed to them the threat to his life from the CPM. If so, the State Government has totally failed to provide security to the slain RMP leader and his family should be given adequate compensation,’’ he said.
Rajagopal said that the UDF wanted to shift the focus from the fifth minister controversy and the appeasement of minorities the Congress was following.
"Political murders by the CPM is not something new to Kerala. It has been happening for so many years in Kannur but this time the UDF leaders are coming out against it in the wake of the Neyyattinkara bypoll,’’ he said.