Amid row, renovated Jubilee Hall in Kozhikode to be opened on Saturday

All political parties, except the BJP, support decision to name it after freedom fighter Mohammed Abdur Rahman

April 27, 2023 08:24 pm | Updated 08:29 pm IST - Kozhikode

Writer K.P. Ramanunni speaking at a cultural event organised in Kozhikode city on Thursday against the backdrop of the controversy related to the naming of the  Jubilee Hall.

Writer K.P. Ramanunni speaking at a cultural event organised in Kozhikode city on Thursday against the backdrop of the controversy related to the naming of the Jubilee Hall. | Photo Credit: K. Ragesh

The Kozhikode Corporation has decided to go ahead with naming the refurbished Jubilee Hall at Kandamkulam in the city after freedom fighter Mohammed Abdur Rahman amid objections raised by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and a few local organisations.

Representatives of political parties such as the CPI(M), Congress, Indian Union Muslim League (IUML), Lok Tantrik Janata Dal, and Janata Dal (Secular) supported the Corporation’s decision at an all-party meeting held on Thursday. The BJP, however, struck a dissident note and opposed it.

Ministers M.B. Rajesh, P.A. Mohamed Riyas, Ahammad Devarkovil, and A.K. Saseendran are expected to attend the opening ceremony on Saturday.

Opening the all-party meeting, Mayor Beena Philip pointed out that the proposal to name the hall after Abdur Rahman was put forward against the backdrop of claims that he was yet to get the respect he rightly deserved. She pointed out that when the proposal came up at the corporation council meeting in March, none of the parties, including the BJP, opposed it. It became a controversy earlier this month.

District Congress Committee president K. Praveen Kumar and IUML district president M.A. Razaq appreciated the Corporation for doing justice to the memories of Abdur Rahman. They said the controversy around the issue was unnecessary and Abdur Rahman was someone who should not be seen as the leader of a community alone, they said.

BJP’s stand

V.K. Sajeevan, district BJP president, however, said that his party had nothing against the freedom fighter. He pointed out that the Jubilee Hall was constructed near the Tali Temple to mark the golden jubilee of Indian Independence. “When it is being renovated, why it is being named after only one freedom fighter? There are people like K. Kelappan, K.P. Kesava Menon and K. Madhavan Nair who made significant contributions to the freedom struggle. Why all of them were forgotten? This effort seems to be to erase the legacy and history of Tali,” Mr. Sajeevan alleged. He also claimed that the naming ceremony and inauguration of the building were being done in a hurry.

Mr. Sajeevan alleged that attempts were being made to create a split in the family of the erstwhile Zamorin of Calicut, who had opposed the Corporation’s move. He later handed over a note of dissent to the Mayor and walked out along with BJP councillor Navya Haridas.

Deputy Mayor C.P. Musafar Ahmed noted that the hall was not being renamed as being alleged by some people. But Abdur Rahman’s name was being added to it. There was no personal agenda behind it, he added. Thottathil Raveendran, MLA, also spoke.

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