Kochi

Police fire water canons to disperse protesting Congress workers in Kochi

A congress worker who was among the protesters mobilised by the District Congress Committee to hold a demonstration in front of the Collectorate on Friday, demanding the resignation of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, holds the hand of a police officer, who was trying yo pacify them.

A congress worker who was among the protesters mobilised by the District Congress Committee to hold a demonstration in front of the Collectorate on Friday, demanding the resignation of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, holds the hand of a police officer, who was trying yo pacify them. | Photo Credit: THULASI KAKKAT

The police fired water canons to disperse Congress workers who staged a protest at the district collectorate demanding the resignation of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan in the wake of allegations by Swapna Suresh, an accused in the diplomatic channel gold smuggling case.

A party worker was injured in police action as the agitators tried to break the police barricade after Leader of the Opposition V.D. Satheesan opened the march.

“Why is the Chief Minister not taking legal steps against the remarks by the accused in the gold smuggling case? It is surprising to see that he is not initiating legal proceedings despite serious revelations being levelled against him,” he said.

Ms. Swapna had alleged that Mr. Vijayan had clandestinely sought the UAE Consulate’s covert help to smuggle out foreign currency and import brass vessels allegedly containing metal via the mission’s diplomatic channel to dodge Customs inspection. She had also dragged the names of his wife and daughter into the controversy.

Mr. Satheesan said the swift police action against P.S. Sarith, another accused in the gold smuggling case, and the setting up of a high-level team to investigate the alleged conspiracy angle in the revelations by Ms. Swapna indicated that the Chief Minister had something to hide. “He is now trying to silence criticism by using brute force. The Congress and the United Democratic Front would not bow down to such threats,” he said.


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Printable version | Aug 14, 2022 2:29:11 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/police-fire-water-canons-to-disperse-protesting-congress-workers-in-kochi/article65513686.ece