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Left parties see red over Basant’s remarks

Special Correspondent
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CPI(M) wants criminal case charged against him; CPI calls for boycott

Former High Court judge R. Basant’s controversial observations in the Suryanelli case, telecast by a private channel, on Saturday triggered off a public outcry across the State, led mostly by Left organisations.

Communist Party of India (Marxist) State secretary Pinarayi Vijayan, terming Mr. Basant’s remarks “wayward”, wanted the State government to charge a criminal case against him.

His statements were laced with his displeasure and resentment towards the Supreme Court which had quashed the High Court verdict that let off the accused in the Suryanelli case, Mr. Vijayan said. (Mr. Basant was one of the judges in the case when it came up in the High Court).

He said the remarks upheld the general perception that vested interests were behind the acquittal of the 35 accused in the case. The reactions of the Congress party’s core committee and BJP’s national leaders indicated that such forces were still active, he added.

Communist Party of India State secretary Pannian Ravindran said that the retired judge’s remarks were an affront to the State.

His depiction of the Suryanelli victim as a child prostitute was an attempt to whitewash the cruel acts perpetrated on her.

The remarks gave rise to the suspicion that the High Court verdict was written to a script, he said.

He wanted the Supreme Court to take action against the former judge who was currently practising in the apex court.

He called on the civil society of the State to boycott Mr. Basant.

‘Shameful’

CPI (M) Polit Bureau member M.A. Baby said it was shameful that people like Mr. Basant were part of our judicial system. Strong protests against such reactions were the only way to ensure rule of law, he said.

The DYFI State secretariat in a statement asked Mr. Basant to withdraw his statements and apologise to the people.

Ravi sees plot

Staff Reporter adds from Kottayam: Union Minister for Overseas Indian Affairs Vayalar Ravi has said that the allegations that are being levelled against Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman P.J. Kurien are part of a political conspiracy.

Mr. Ravi said the judiciary could always be approached by any person (to ascertain the truth).

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