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Governor’s intervention and bilateral agreements


The CPM-RSS clashes, conflicts, political killings and acts of vandalism have been ruining the peace of Kannur district for decades.

Just when the incidents of violence were deemed to have died down following the bilateral talks of late, both the parties have took to bloodshed, going on a rampage in Thiruvananthapuram district, spreading fear among the people. Contrary to the norms, the Governor intervened in the matter and summoned the Chief Minister who handles the Home portfolio and the DGP to the Raj Bhavan. Even as the unprecedented move kicked up a controversy, the question that arises is whether the LDF could move ahead and function peacefully and democratically and put an end to the bloodshed. The Chief Minister who gave assurances of holding bilateral discussions in Thiruvananthapuram, Kottayam and Kannur districts and organization meet at the state level as well as an all-party meeting on August 6, has initiated steps in that regard.

Those concerned have informed the media that the CPM-BJP leaders have agreed to put an end to the political clashes and encounters. However, given that the maintenance of law and order comes under the jurisdiction of states, what led to the provocation for the move by the Governor who is a representative of the Centre, of summoning the CM and the DGP, is a hot topic of discussion. Governors aren’t usually seen intervening in matters even in states with a law and order situation much worse than Kerala. When the law and order situation in a state is in complete chaos, the Governors send reports to the Centre on demand and if necessary, the Centre recommends an imposition of Presidential rule in the state, which is the Constitutional precedence. Although things haven’t turned that haywire, the Governor after deeming that the state government has been faltering in its attempts to maintain law and order, beckoning the Chief Minister to know more regarding the incidents, isn’t odd. However, none would believe that the situation in Thiruvananthapuram has turned much volatile. Also, if the Governor feels that the required vigilance as well as the related measures should be taken even before the situation turned tense, a meeting could as well be carried out with the state government. However, those who sense a furtive swiftness and vigilance in the Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh expressing his concern to the Chief Minister and the Governor summoning the CM and the DGP as soon as an RSS worker was hacked to death, couldn’t be blamed. When the Governor of Bengal owing to similar circumstances, summoned Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to Raj Bhavan, the latter refusing to turn up should be remembered in this context.

All said and done, it’s good that the Governor has intervened and that Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan assured to restore peace, initiating the necessary steps. If bilateral discussions and all-party meet succeed in eliminating the Marxist-RSS clashes, all sections of the people would only be elated, particularly in circumstances when even the court has failed to prevent hartals that come without any warning bringing the lives of the people to a standstill, whenever incidents of violence occurs. A recent report that surfaced revealed that those who back the hartals stopped even the patients from accessing the hospitals. Even the two-wheelers that were out in town for necessaities weren’t spared. Vandalizing shops, houses, office buildings and public transports have been recognized as the usual way of operating during all political clashes and hartals. Instances prove that the Governor’s firm stance, court embargos and hunger strikes by politicians aren’t sufficient for putting an end to the predicament.

Even the parties that doesn’t theoretically accept democracy should relinquish violence, bloodshed and use of force at least practically, as long as the Constitution survives. Do not slaughter each other at least for the sake for widows who are left midway with no means of support and children who turn orphans. Those who claim the lives of the head of the families and create martyrs, should ponder on how long they would be able to quench the tears of the people. Above all, it’s also relevant to take an assessment about the number of leaders who have so far achieved ‘martyrdom’. It’s them who dub the party workers as martyrs, collecting funds and building memorials as well as statures in their names. If sincere rethinking doesn’t take place in such aspects, do remember that bilateral agreements, all-party decisions and assurances from the government have all taken place before. Or is it like ‘it is easy to keep the knife inside. We have done it several times’?

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