Wayanad: The disqualification of Rahul Gandhi from Lok Sabha triggered protests across Kerala on Saturday. Rahul's constituency Wayanad witnessed strong protests led by Congress workers, Youth Congress and student wings.
The angry protesters burnt PM Modi in effigy during a protest march to the BSNL office in Kalpetta. Congress leaders, including MLA T Siddique, who were part of the protest march were by force removed from the site and carried away by the police to their bus. Besides them, several Youth Congress (YC) and KSU leaders were also arrested and removed from the protest site.
Protests by the party, its youth and student wings were also seen in Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi, Kozhikode and Pathanamthitta areas of the State. A protest march led by Youth Congress and KSU to Raj Bhavan ended up in violence after police forcefully tried to disperse the protesters. It is reported that police resorted to lathi-charge against the protesters leaving several injured.
In Pathanamthitta, protesting YC activists entered a post office and were arrested and removed by force by the police as they shouted slogans against Modi.
In Kochi and Kozhikode, many party and YC workers held protest marches and shouted slogans against the BJP and the Centre.
Earlier in the day in Kalpetta, leaders and workers of the party and its youth and student wings, after marching to the BSNL office sat down on the road in front of it, which led to the blocking of traffic movement, according to visuals aired on TV channels.
Some YC workers were also seen climbing over police barricades into the BSNL office compound.
As the Congress, YC and KSU leaders and workers were being hauled away, they kept shouting slogans like 'INC zindabad'.
In the morning, the Leader of Opposition in the State Assembly and senior Congress leader V D Satheesan told reporters in Kochi that the party and the UDF would be holding protests across the State against the disqualification of Gandhi.
The party would also hold a protest march to the Kerala Raj Bhavan on March 27, he said.
Gandhi was convicted and sentenced to two years in jail by a Surat Court on Wednesday in a 2019 criminal defamation case over his "Modi surname" remark.
A day later, the Lok Sabha Secretariat in a notification said that his disqualification was effective from March 23 -- the day of his conviction.
(With PTI inputs)