In a desperate bid to escape the charges he is facing over the frequent incidents of police atrocities in Kerala, Marxist Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Thursday fell into a trap of his own by calling an alleged follower of Islamist leader Abdul Nasser Madani a terrorist for taking part in a people’s protest against the police under his command. The same Pinarayi had once declared that Madani was not a terrorist.
Replying to a notice for adjournment motion in the State Assembly over an incident that occurred on Tuesday in Aluva in which four policemen had brutally beaten up a youth triggering intense protests, Pinarayi said that the protestors were people with extremist orientation and certain persons involved in the terror act of burning of a bus in 2005 were among them.
A Tamil Nadu State bus was torched by a group allegedly headed by Thadiyantavide Nazeer at Kalamassery near Kochi on the night of September 9, 2005 as an act of revenge for the torture the Tamil Nadu police had inflicted on Madani while he was in Coimbatore prison in connection with the 1999 serial blasts there. Madani’s wife Sufiya was tenth accused in the case.
On Thursday, Pinarayi asked Aluva’s Congress MlA Anwar Sadath who moved the notice for the motion, “Doesn’t the MlA know that Ismail, a person who had taken part in the protest over the incident (of police atrocity against the youth, Usman) was involved in the bus-burning caseIJ Certain other accused in that case also were among the protestors.”
Ismail, the accused in the bus-burning case, told the media, “The charge against me is that I had torched the bus for Madani. Pinarayi had gone to meet that very same Madani in jail and had dais with him. I am called an extremist. But does that take away my right to go to the police station to meet Usman, the son of my father’s brother, whom they had torturedIJ”
Despite the objections aired by many top CPI(M) leaders, then State party secretary Pinarayi Vijayan had made Madani the guest of honour at the lDF’s lok Sabha election convention on March 21, 2009 in Ponnani. At the meet Pinarayi had said, “Don’t scare us with statements like Madani is a communalist, a terrorist. Madani is no terrorist.”