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Homechevron_rightKeralachevron_rightCourt tells cops to...

Court tells cops to preserve Maoists' bodies till Dec. 5

Court tells cops to preserve Maoists bodies till Dec. 5

Manjeri: Amid a controversy over the gunning down of two alleged Maoists, a court here on Tuesday asked the authorities in the State to preserve their bodies until December 5.

The District Principal Sessions Court at Manjeri said it will hold a detailed trial in the case on December 9.

The court issued the order while hearing a petition filed by Babu, the brother of Kuppu Devarajan, one of the killed Maoists. Babu moved the court after the Stat epolice said it can preserve the body only till Monday evening. Babu and several human rights activists claim that this was a fake encounter, unlike what is claimed by Kerala Police.

Police said it was only after the Maoists opened fire that they retaliated and shot the two dead.

Incidentally, a court in Kozhikode had earlier asked police to preserve the bodies until Monday evening, following which they have been kept in the mortuary of the state-run Kozhikode Medical College Hospital.

Tuesday is the sixth day since the Kerala Thunderbolts -- an elite commando force of the state police -- during a patrol in the deep forests of Nilambur, reportedly shot dead the two ultras, Kuppu Devarajan and Ajitha alias Kaveri.

After the incident, the Communist Party of India (CPI) -- the second biggest ally of the ruling Pinarayi Vijayan-led LDF government -- criticised the killings, after which various human rights activists took up the issue.

The local media houses here also received a call from a person identifying himself as a Maoist, who said that this is a case of fake encounter.

Senior BJP leader V. Muraleedharan, in a statement on Monday, asked the Communist Party of India-Marxist to end playing hide and seek on the issue.

"Whenever such incidents happen in other states, the CPI-M is the first to react by saying that it is a fake encounter. For the first time, this has happened here, but even Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan is silent.

"All he said is that information is still coming in. He should break his silence," said Muraleedharan, a former state BJP chief.

The Kerala government has announced a crime branch police probe into the incident.

The Congress party has demanded a judicial probe into the killings.

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