Home Minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan is firm about going ahead with the police case against Congress MP K. Sudhakaran, who created a scene at the Valapattanam police station to get one of his supporters released from police custody.
The Minister told The Hindu on Friday that the government had no option but to proceed against Mr. Sudhakaran as it was its duty to protect police personnel in the performance of their duty. He said he had given directions to police officers to take firm action in cases related to illegal sand-mining.
The Superintendent of Police, Kottarakara, was shifted from his post for his alleged involvement with illegal sand-miners. The Kannur case has its roots in illegal sand-mining and the police would have to act in accordance with the law. In the case of Mr. Sudhakaran’s outbursts, the place of occurrence was inside a police station, he said.
The Minister held a high-level meeting with senior police officers and directed them to ensure that police personnel behaved in a courteous manner while dealing with public servants including elected representatives. The Valapattanam sub-inspector had been given a minor punishment for the manner in which he handled the accused.
The government cannot accept primitive methods of locking up the accused after disrobing them, he said. The Sudhakaran issue did not have anything to do with politics and was purely an administrative matter, he said.
The Minister said Mr. Sudhakaran himself was in the forefront in demanding action against CPI(M) leaders M.V. Jayarajan and P. Jayarajan when the two created scenes in police stations in connection with the T.P. Chandrasekharan murder case.
Mr. Radhakrishnan appears to be on a tightrope walk, trying to balance his administrative duties with that of protecting the interests of the Congress party. At a UDF meeting the other day, several leaders of UDF constituents supported his action in firmly dealing with Mr. Sudhakaran. The Minister said he was unfazed by the poster campaign against him and that he would not retract from his stand in upholding the rule of law.
According Congress sources, the manner in which Mr. Radhakrishnan handled the case against Mr. Sudhakaran has, in fact, strengthened the government stand in the Chandrasekharan case, especially since the CPI(M) had accused the Congress of conspiring to undermine its middle-level leadership.
The two factions in the Congress are gearing up for a showdown for the control of Kannur district in the upcoming party reconstitution. The Minister’s firm resolve to go ahead with the legal proceedings against Mr. Sudhakaran is likely to make the factional conflicts sharper, according to Congress sources.