Thiruvananthapuram: Several incidents of violence, including stone pelting were reported throughout Kerala in the 12-hour (6am – 6pm) hartal called by the Popular Front of India on Friday. At least 170 persons have been arrested.
The state-wide hartal had been called in protest of the nationwide raid and arrests by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Thursday.
At Narayanpara in Kannur district, a petrol bomb was hurled at a vehicle distributing newspapers.
In Alappuzha, the windshields of two Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) buses and two lorries were destroyed.
Stones were also hurled at vehicles in Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Ernakulam, Kozhikode and Wayanad districts.
A KSRTC driver suffered an eye injury near Kozhikode Civil Station when stones were hurled at the bus he was driving. He was admitted to the General Hospital.
Another KSRTC driver was injured in stone pelting on the National Highway near Cheruvannur steel complex in Kozhikode. The driver, Siji, was admitted to a private hospital nearby.
KSRTC buses were damaged in stone pelting incidents on the Chingavanam-Changanassery route in Kottayam. Stone pelting was also reported in Thekkumgopuram, Aymenem, Kodimatha and Kurichi regions of Kottayam. The police lathi-charged protestors in Erattupetta after an agitation escalated there.
In Thiruvananthapuram's Pothencode, a group of 15 agitators vandalised shops. One person was taken into custody by the police after the incident. Vehicles plying on roads were stopped by protestors in Kattakada of Thiruvananthapuram.
In Kollam's Palimukku, a group of protesters hit the policemen on duty with a bike after the former hurled abuses at commuters. Senior Civil Police Officer Antony, CPO Nikhil were injured.
Kerala University, MG University, and Kannur University had postponed all exams that were scheduled to be held on Friday in the wake of the hartal. Kerala University also postponed Friday's B.Ed spot allotment to September 25.
Meanwhile, the Kerala Public Services Commission went ahead with its exams and service verification as scheduled.