Pinarayi flays BJP candidate's floral tribute at Punnapra Vayalar memorial

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan

Cheruthuruthy: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan flayed BJP leader Sandeep Vachaspati's act of paying floral tributes at the famous Punnapra Vayalar martyrs' memorial in Alappuzha, saying it was intended to destroy peace and harmony in the region.

"This should not have happened as the memorial is associated with the sentiments of the communists.

The aim of the BJP candidate was to destroy peace and harmony and provoke Left workers.

"The candidate should not have done that. But CPM workers kept their cool and I appreciate them for that", he told reporters at Cheruthuruthy in Thrissur district.

The memorial, built to honour the Communists killed during their movement against the 'misrule' of Sir C P Ramaswami Iyer, the prime minister of erstwhile Princely state of Travancore in 1946, is maintained by the CPM and CPI.

Sandeep Vachaspati, the BJP nominee from Alappuzha assembly constituency, had paid floral tributes and raised "Bharat Mata Ki Jai" slogan at the place on Friday.

Sandeep Vachaspati paying floral tributes at Punnapra Vayalar martyrs' memorial
Sandeep Vachaspati paying floral tributes at Punnapra Vayalar martyrs' memorial.

The CPM on Saturday expressed strong protest against the act of the BJP candidate, who "trespassed" into the memorial.

In a tweet, CPM leader S Ramachandran Pillai said the act amounted to "insulting" the martyrs of the Punnapra Vayalar uprising and hurting the sentiments of those who rever the legacy of the struggle.

CPI district secretary T J Anjalose had on Friday filed a police complaint against Vachaspati.

The BJP candidate said the memorial was the symbol of "the biggest betrayal" by Communist leaders who had fled the scene after forcing their innocent followers from Scheduled Castes and backward communities to face the guns of the Army.

C P Ramaswamy Iyer, who had opposed Travancore joining the Indian union, was forced to leave the kingdom as a result of the uprising in Punnapra Vayalar.

(with inputs from PTI)

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