The advisory issued by the two countries was described as an “insult” to the southern state by tourism minister Kadakampally Surendran.
Thalassery/Thiruvananthapuram: Violence involving workers of the BJP-RSS and the ruling CPI(M) workers over the Sabarimala issue continued in Kerala late Saturday night and spilled over into the early hours of Sunday with a number of houses and shops in the politically volatile Kannur district being attacked. A total of 3,282 people were arrested till Saturday night.
Police said bombs were hurled early Sunday morning on the house of a non-gazetted officers’ union leader at Thalassery in Kannur. Houses of some BJP workers were also attacked in the area forcing the district administration to impose prohibitory orders.
The BJP alleged a law and order breakdown in the state even as the US and the UK issued travel advisories to their citizens and asked them to remain vigilant while travelling to the troubled state. The advisory issued by the two countries was described as an “insult” to the southern state by tourism minister Kadakampally Surendran.
Ten per cent of Kerala’s GDP comes from the tourism sector and the industry is worried that the frequent hartals and protests would severely impact the state which is slowly recovering from the massive devastation caused by the August floods.
Director general of police Loknath Behara said that 1,286 cases have been registered till Saturday night and 3,282 persons arrested in connection with the violent incidents since the January 3 hartal called against the entry of two women into the Sabarimala temple on January 2.
Of the arrested, 487 have been remanded and 2,795 granted bail, he said.
Right-wing groups have been staging protest across the state against the state government’s decision to implement the Supreme Court order of September 28 allowing women of all age groups in to the hill-top shrine. The BJP has backed protests.
In New Delhi, BJP leader and Union minister Smriti Irani said neither the common man nor a member of Parliament was safe in the state as she condemned the bomb attack at the house of party’s Rajya Sabha member V. Muraleedharan.
“There is a state of chaos and anarchy... Such state of breakdown of the law and order that be it a common man or an MP, none are safe,” she told a press conference.
Ms Irani said that over 1,286 cases have been registered and over 37,000 people named as accused by the state police during protests.
BJP workers on Sunday staged a demonstration at the Kerala House in Delhi demanding the resignation of chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan over his government’s role in the Sabarimala issue and the alleged attacks on party workers in the state.
The Opposition Congress in Kerala also attacked Mr Vijayan, accusing him of not controlling the law and order situation and preparing ground for the BJP to grow.
“The chief minister is not trying bring the situation under control. Instead he is issuing statements like a CPI(M) secretary, worsening the law and order situation. His actions help BJP and Sangh Parivar to gain ground in Kerala,” said Leader of Opposition in the Kerala Assembly and Congress leader Ramesh Chennithala.