Within 24 hours of the murder of a Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) worker at Elappully, near here, a Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) leader was hacked to death at Melamuri in Palakkad town on Saturday.
Sreenivasan, 45, former RSS Sharirik Sikshak Pramukh, was attacked by a six-member gang at his shop at Melamuri around 1 p.m. The attackers came on three motorbikes and escaped after inflicting fatal injuries on Sreenivasan at his shop SKS Autos.
The attack spread fear across the town. The district administration clamped prohibitory order until Wednesday.
The attack was in apparent retaliation for Friday’s murder of SDPI worker A. Subair, 44, at Elappully. The SDPI had blamed the RSS and the BJP for the attack. The police arrested four RSS men in connection with Subair’s murder.
The RSS leader was attacked on Saturday amid enhanced vigil by the police sparked by fear of retaliation.
A surveillance camera footage from a business establishment opposite Sreenivasan’s shop showed six men coming on three motorbikes and one of them walking into the shop. Two men then got off the bike with long blades and ran into the shop. One of them kicked Sreenivasan down, and the others hacked him. A man in the shop was seen running out in fear. In less than 15 seconds, the assailants were seen escaping on the motorbikes.
Sreenivasan was rushed to a private hospital, where he died after an hour. He suffered multiple wounds on his head and limbs.
Police face criticism
BJP leaders blamed the SDPI for the murder, and accused the police and the government of inaction and protecting extremist groups.
The police faced criticism from different quarters, especially from the BJP and the Opposition, for failing to prevent the retaliatory murder. The police had deployed three companies in the district.
Probe teams formed
Two special teams were formed to investigate the murders of the SDPI and the RSS workers. Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) in charge of law Vijay Sakhre and North Zone IG Ashok Yadav reached Palakkad on Saturday to supervise the investigation.