29 June, 2016

Dalits on Communist Radar In Kerala

With CPM led LDF Government in power, Kerala has witnessed as many as fifteen incidents of attacks against Dalitsin the last few weeks. In the recent episode, two sisters and a one and half year old child were put behind the bars for alleged attack on CPM workers!

Ideologically, communists do not believe in caste but they certainly believe in struggle of which violence is an integral part. This struggle is largely believed to be for the oppressed and downtrodden. But the arrogance of power of communists in Kerla has turned them against Dalits in Kerala. Till now, the tool of violence was used to target RSS and BJP workers then shifted to Congress supporting families and now it seems members of SC caste who dare to stand against the intolerant fascist mindset of CPM are the targets. That is why two Dalit sisters were put behind the bars in Thalassery, Kannur District, Kerala. When Akhila and Anjana were jailed, the former’s one and half-year-old child became a prisoner too. Why were the daughters of INTUC leader N Rajan put in the jail? It is not a simple case as per police records: They got a complaint from CPM that the girls barged in their party office in Thalassery and attacked a party worker M Shijin. This is the biggest joke Kerala has ever come across since LDF took over last month. Even male activists of a non-CPM background cannot enter a CPM office in a party village like Kuttimakkool, let alone two Dalit girls with a one and half-year-old child and attack a male party man!

Rajan had contested the last local body elections against a CPM candidate. Since then, he says, CPM men have been teasing his daughters calling them their caste name when they were passing by the party office. When the girls questioned the verbal abuse, CPM men manhandled them, he says.  The same day the party men attacked his house. 

The most deplorable part of the episode was the arrest of the girls for non-bailable offences. But, because of the mounting public protests, the girls got bail after few days. But, the bail and release from the jail did not put an end to the torture they have been suffering. The day both were released on bail they were invited to a channel discussion. During the debate two CPM leaders’ references pushed them to further torture. DYFI leader AN Shamseer MLA said that both girls had entered the CPM office and unleashed attacks! PP Divya, woman CPM leader and vice president of the ZillaPanchayat said, during the same discussion, both girls were public nuisance! She added that the girls constituted a “Quotation team” (a group of persons taking assignment of attacking and killing others and charging fees from the “clientele!”).
The aforementioned references pushed them to frustration. They thought, they have lost their self-esteem hence are unable to face the society. The same night, Anjana, younger one, consumed tablets overdose for suicide. She is still in the hospital. Now, reports suggest, Thalassery police has registered cases against Shamseer and Divya for abetting the girl to commit suicide. Divya has been infamous for her indecent FB posts against PM NarendraModi.
BJP state president KummanamRajasekharan has condemned the CPM role in the whole episode. The Congress leaders also are attacking CPM for their arrogant and violent politics in Kannur District. But, the most interesting reaction was from CM PinarayiVijayan. He replied the media question that he did not know about the arrest of the Dalit girls.  He advised the media men to approach the police for further information. It was too unbecoming for him since he was holding the home portfolio also!
Media gives hints that District SP’s report admits the failure in applying humanitarian consideration when the girls were sent to the jail along with a child. Now, National Women’s Right Commission and Kerala Women’s Right Commission have collected their statements from Anjana and Akhila. The National Scheduled Caste Commission chairman PL Punia said that the Commission would enquire into the allegations. There would be actions against the officers behind this atrocity whatever the positions they may hold.
Organiser spoke to Neelakantan Master, president of Kerala PulayaMahaSabha (KPMS) the community organisation of Dalit Pulaya community. Thalassery incident proves that Dalits enjoy no safety and security in the state. The allegation that two young girls went to CPM office in a party bastion, carrying a one and half-year-old baby, is nothing but utter nonsense. The girls’ family members had left CPM several years before and joined Congress. But, still CPM is not ready to ‘pardon’ their ‘crime.’ The family members, especially the girls had to suffer eve teasing by the alleged CPM men whenever they passed by party office. Once they were at their wit’s end, they naturally protested. CPM men, still in the hangover of the electoral victory, complained to the police. Police registered a case against them and sent them to the women’s jail for non-bailable offences. So, Akhila’s baby turned the first child detenue under Pinarayi regime. This is not an isolated incident. About fifteen such incidents have taken place in Kerala during the last few weeks with Dalits at the receiving end.Jisha murder case is one among them. Master’s KPMS staged ErnakulamDistrict Collectorate siege demanding the immediate arrest of Jisha’s killer.
KPMS set a deadline of June 24 for the arrest of the Jisha killer. And, Amirul Islam, a migrant labourer from Assam, was arrested last week. Master said, Abhijith (27) a Dalit from Vaikkom, KottayamDistrict, was killed recently; despite KPMS’ strong protests and demonstrations, no police action so far. Dalit issues matter only if it is in North India. We have seen this dirty trick in RohithVemulacase. But, no justice for Abhijith or Anjana and Akhila. KPMS has asked their 64 taluk unions in all 14 revenue districts to conduct torch bearing demonstrations.
KPMS leader states that they are not satisfied with the arrest of Amirul Islam in Jisha case. Police should reveal who are behind him. There were already allegations against Congress leader, former minister and UDF liaison committee member PPThankachan. He had immediately denied the charges. Master suspects a nexus between CPM and Congress in this regard. He alleged that former CPM MLA Saju Paul is the cousin of Thakachan, hence the case is being hushed up. He blamed both UDF and LDF for denying the homeless a plot of land and a house. Dalit issue is a social one. They should be handled properly and assured legal protection. There should be systems to trace criminals from among the migrant labour force. Master concluded that Government should apologise to Anjana and Akhil for the injustice they had to counter.
It is evident that that both Congress-led UDF and CPM-led LDF are the two sides of the same coin in matters concerning Dalits. Both want to keep them as vote-banks, and that is it. Jisha murder took place during Oommen Chandy’s UDF regime. People of Kerala know what sort of cool approach they took towards that murder.
CPM attacks Dalit Family
In another incident of CPM attack against Dalits, a mother and her two children were injured in Ambalappuzha, Alappuzha District on June 20. Puthuvayal Omana (50), her sons Mahesh, Dhanesh and their friend Kannan are the injured and they have been admitted to Vandanam Medical College Hospital. The mother and children came under attack while they were attending a house warming ceremony. The assailants were attacking them by shouting, “What do Dalits have to do here?”. They dragged Mahesh and Dhanesh out of the house and brutally thrashed. Omana was reportedly attacked while she was trying to save her children. Among the attacked, Dhanesh is an RSS Swayamsevak. In this area, CPM goons have been persistently attacking their political opponents for the last few months. Despite threatening of CPM, several Communist party workers and sympathisers have joined BJP  that provoked CPM and led to resort to violence as usual.

By T Satisan, Kochi

Courtesy: Organiser

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