Suryanelli gangrape, Kurien issue rocks Kerala Assembly again

Suryanelli gangrape protest

Responding to the adjournment notice given by CPI leader C Divakaran, Home Minister Thiruvanchur Radhakrishnan said he would be tabling the ADGP's report and the video clippings of the incident.

The Minister said police had only removed the protesters when they tried to barge into the Assembly complex and that they had handled the situation in a restrained manner was evident from the visuals.

The Home Minister, however, said the government was prepared to order a judicial probe into the incident as it was firm in its stand that MLAs should be treated respectfully.

Divakaran vehemently disputed the minister's contention and alleged that police even snatched the 'mangalsutra' of Bijimol and tore the sari of the other MLA who was on the scene.

Taking a dig at Chandy, Divakaran said Government had been taking the recent developments in the Suryanelli case rather lightly despite the AICC taking a positive position that the allegation against Kurien would be examined. "This shows that the cultural standard of AICC is far superior to the stand taken by your government," he added.

The chief minister said government was prepared to go through the video and other reports jointly with opposition to verify if police personnel had misbehaved with women protesters. If anybody was found guilty, action would be taken, he said.

The opposition, however, stuck to their stand that the judicial probe should be preceded by suspension of the police personnel who, they asserted, roughed up the protesters.

Uproarious scenes were witnessed in the House yesterday with LDF members upping the ante against the government's refusal to order a fresh probe and protesting the alleged action against women protesters including two MLAs during a march to the Assembly complex. The members later boycotted the Assembly, leading to its adjournment.

The LDF had accused the government of trying to avoid further investigation in the 1996 case.

... contd.

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