Kerala

Keezhattur tense as agitators make threat of self-immolation

The agitators including women are seen carrying bottles of kerosene and diesel.   | Photo Credit: Mohamed Nazeer

Local residents and farmers of Keezhattur village agitating against the proposed NH bypass intensified their protest on Wednesday with threat of self-immolation to prevent Revenue and National Highway Authority of India officials from entering the village to measure the land identified for acquisition.

The village has been facing a showdown situation since Wednesday morning with agitators led by Vayalkili leaders Suresh Keezhattur and Nambradath Janaki dousing their clothes with diesel and threatening to set themselves on fire if the authorities enter the paddy fields to measure the surveyed area included in the bypass alignment. The agitators including women are seen carrying bottles of kerosene and diesel. Tension prevails in the area. Large posse of police personnel was deployed in the area in view of the tension.

The agitators of Keezhattur village in the Taliparamba municipality have been agitating against the bypass alignment alleging that the construction would destroy the paddy fields of the village. Though the village is a CPI(M) stronghold, the Vayalkilikal, a gathering of village residents including party workers and sympathisers, was spearheading the stir in defiance of the party leadership's stand. The CPI(M) leadership here alleged that the stir was anti-development.

The agitation intensified on Wednesday in the wake of reports that the officials would visit the village to measure the land. The CPI(M) and the agitators are trading allegations against each other over the past few days. The CPI(M) claimed that majority of land owners have given consent letters to the local MLA James Mathew. The Vayalkili countered it terming the claim fake.


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Printable version | Oct 15, 2021 9:48:56 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/keezhattur-tense-as-agitators-make-threat-of-self-immolation/article23238364.ece

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