Kochi: The Kerala High Court on Wednesday criticised the political killings in the state. “Those who are in the higher echelons masterminding and orchestrating these barbaric activities remain safe. They celebrate martyrs’ days and shed crocodile tears,” the court said while acquitting BJP men accused in the murder of CPM activist Areekkal Ashokan in Kannur on December 12, 2000.
“The annihilation of political opponents has become the order of the day, ignoring the fact that divergent political ideologies are natural in a democratic polity with a multiparty system. Besides, the proponents of the philosophy forget the reality that an ideology worth its name should exist for the uplift of mankind. Political killings by using arms and explosives are acts of barbarity,” it held.
Four RSS/BJP activists were acquitted. The court said the recurring overt acts by members of political parties, especially in northern districts, disseminate a message that human lives are less worthy than a political ideology. There were 27 accused in the case and the sessions court sentenced four accused who challenged the same before the HC. While allowing the appeal, the Bench observed, “The prosecution has failed to establish the guilt of the accused beyond doubt.”
“Both the SHO and investigation officer failed in placing the relevant facts before the court to establish that the FIR was promptly registered.”
Further, procedural regularity in registering the GD is also not proved. These aspects cast a reasonable doubt in the mind of the court about the propriety of investigation. Misuse of the statements recorded by the police under section 161 CrPC was rampant in this case, disregarding the basic principles of law,” the court said....