Mansoor murder: IG Sparjan Kumar to head probe team

Mansoor, a Muslim League worker,who was hacked by a group of assailants near their house at Pullookkara near Koothuparamba in Kannur district on Tuesday.

The police team probing the murder of Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) activist Mansoor at Kuthuparamba near Kannur in Kerala has been reconstituted.

The investigation will now be headed by senior IPS officer Sparjan Kumar, IG, Manorama News reported on Saturday.

The case was assigned to the IPS officer amid stiff protest by the opposition Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) alleging political influence over the probe team. The IUML is a major ally of the UDF. District Crime Branch DySP had been heading the investigation.

UDF leaders had on Friday cried foul over the course of Kerala Police's probe into the brutal murder which happened hours after the Tuesday's assembly election.

Mansoor, 22, was seriously injured when a gang of two dozen people first threw a bomb at him and then attacked him and his brother with swords and knives at their house near Kuthuparamba.

Mansoor died while being taken to the hospital, while his brother was being treated at a hospital in Kozhikode.

Leader of Opposition Ramesh Chennithala alleged that it was a well-planned murder similar to the way the CPM planned the murder of former Communist leader T P Chandrasekheran.

"The CPM is trying to undermine the entire case by announcing a Crime Branch probe. The police are playing foul and even after almost three days, the only person who has been nabbed is the one who was taken into custody by the local people from the crime spot. After that, the police have not been able to take into custody even a single accused. We demand that the probe be headed by an IPS officer," he said.

Kannur's Congress MP K Sudhakaran alleged the probe team was headed by a "close aide" of the CPM.

"We are certain that, the truth will never come out in the present probe. Just like in a few similar murder cases at Kannur, the CBI will have to be called, with the help of the court," he said.

IUML leader P K Kunhalikutty said that there was no way that they would accept a probe by a team of police officials "close to the CPM".

"The criminals who did this are sure that nothing will happen to them, but we are not going to sit idle and we will do everything to bring out the real culprits," he said.

Eleven CPM activists have been named in the First Information Report (FIR) registered by the Kerala Police over the killing of Mansoor. All the accused are either activists of the CPM or its youth wing DYFI.

Apart from Shinos, who is already in custody, the FIR names Ratheesh, Sangeeth, Sreerag, Suhail, Sajeevan, Ashwanth, Sasi, Sumesh, Jabir and Nasar.

Ratheesh was found dead on Friday in an isolated area at Chekkiad in Kerala's Kozhikode district. Ratheesh and Shinos were neighbours of the victim.

CPM has been trying to distance itself from the accused in the case. Terming the murder as unfortunate, CPM district secretary of Kannur M V Jayarajan had earlier said that the murder was carried out without the knowledge of the party and the party would not protect any workers involved in the crime.

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