Some of the political murders of the 1980s and 90s are likely to be re-investigated based on clues obtained by police during the probe into the murder of Marxist rebel TP Chandrasekharan and the controversial speech of senior CPM leader MM Mani.
Mani had most recently boasted in a political rally that the party had in the past drew up a list of political enemies and eliminated three of them. He was subsequently removed as as CPI(M)’s Idukki district secretary.
Mani said he would abide by the party decision, but alleged that some local Congress leaders and a section of the media had colluded and “blown his speech out of proportion” and cast him and the party in poor light.
The most sensational among these cases is the brutal murder of Yuva Morcha leader and school teacher KT Jayakrishnan in front of his primary class students at Panur in the politically volatile Kannur district in 1999.
The BJP had alleged that the murder was conspired by local CPM leaders.
What spurred the demand for re-opening the case was the reported admission of TK Rajeesh, arrested in connection with the Chandrasekharan murder case, that those arrayed as the accused in the Jayakrishnan were not the real culprits.
According to police, Rajeesh told investigators during questioning that the list of accused in the case was prepared by police based on that provided by party leaders in Kannur.
A fast-track court had sentenced four accused to death in the case, but the Supreme Court later let off three of them and reduced the sentence of one to life imprisonment, for want of sufficient evidence.
CPM leaders have stoutly refuted the charge that the party had shielded the real culprits, maintaining that such propaganda was part of a concerted vilification drive. While the BJP demanded re-investigation in the case, Home Minister Thiruvanchur Radhakrishnan said that it would be considered if preliminary evidence emerged, necessitating such a course.