Kerala

Turbulence in Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Congress Protest Turns Chaotic, Leaders Hospitalized

Recent Clash Erupts Over Alleged Police Aggression During 'Nava Kerala Sadas,' Prompting MPs' Strong Condemnation

In a dramatic turn of events, the capital city of Kerala became a battleground as a Congress party protest morphed into a chaotic clash with the police. This eruption of tension was a direct response to perceived unwarranted police aggression against Youth Congress workers protesting the ‘Nava Kerala Sadas‘ program by CPIM.

During VD Sateesan’s address at the protest, the situation intensified when the police responded with tear gas shells. Consequently, KPCC President K Sudhakaran, accompanied by several Members of Parliament (MPs) and Members of the Legislative Assembly (MLAs), was swiftly taken to the hospital. Amidst this tumult, a distressing scene unfolded as numerous activists, including women and journalists, succumbed to unconsciousness in the aftermath of the tear gas assault.

Condemning the police’s actions, the Congress leadership firmly asserted that law enforcement had overstepped established protocols by resorting to water cannons and tear gas shells. The protest, led by K Sudhakaran and opposition leader VD Satheesan, commenced at 11 am, reaching a boiling point around 11:30 am. However, the stand-off heightened as police erected barricades, setting the stage for a direct confrontation.

As a defiance, the police responded by wielding water cannons. This triggered activists to hurl stones at the police, resulting in a rapid succession of tear gas shells—eight times. Faced with this onslaught, many activists swiftly retreated, leaving the leaders on the protest stage grappling with breathlessness and eye pain.

Following the tear gas attack, Sudhakaran and fellow leaders were urgently transported to the Sree Rama Krishna Mission Hospital at Sasthamangalam. Recent reports indicate that Anwar Sadhath MLA, Jeby Mather MP, and Chandy Oommen are currently undergoing treatment. Despite the leaders’ absence, Congress workers remained steadfast at the protest site until the intervention of M. Liju and M Vincent, who successfully persuaded the workers to halt the protest.

In a strong condemnation of the police’s actions, MPs Kodikunnil Suresh and Shashi Tharoor alleged premeditation in the attack. Tharoor, still grappling with the effects of the shell attack on his face, emphasized that the police had violated established protocols for using water cannons and tear gas shells.

Speaking from the hospital in the aftermath, K Sudhakaran attributed the violence to the ‘police goons’ of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. MP K Muraleedharan suggested that the attack stemmed from Vijayan’s distress following the perceived failure of the Nava Kerala Sadas.

As the dust settles over this stormy episode, lingering questions arise about the delicate balance between democratic protest and police response. The incident casts a somber shadow over the democratic fabric of the state, and it is poised to reverberate, with MPs pledging to address the issue in the upcoming parliamentary session. The clash in Thiruvananthapuram serves as a stark reminder of the fragile equilibrium between dissent and authority, with both sides—the ruling LDF and the opposition—pointing fingers, each entrenched in their

narrative.

Rohit Sharma

Rohit Sharma is a seasoned Political Journalist with a deep passion for Indian Politics. With over a decade of experience in the field, he has established himself as a trusted… More »

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