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Kerala

Kerala Gold Smuggling Case: In-Flight Protest Against CM Pinarayi Vijayan Leaves Passengers Shocked

A couple of videos that were aired on news channels with regard to the incident shows two men, one of them wearing a black shirt, sloganeering inside an IndiGo aircraft, as they walked towards EP Jayarajan, senior CPI(M) leader and convenor of the Left Democratic Front. Jayarajan was seen pushing the men away as they approached him.

(Photo: India Ahead Network)

New Delhi: Ongoing political tensions in Kerala over the gold smuggling case reached the summit on Monday evening following an in-flight protest by two Youth Congress workers against Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, demanding his resignation. What followed was a series of retaliatory protest marches by Left organisations across the state, condemning the incident, which they claim was an attempt to “assault” the Chief Minister.

A couple of videos that were aired on news channels with regard to the incident shows two men, one of them wearing a black shirt, sloganeering inside an IndiGo aircraft, as they walked towards EP Jayarajan, senior CPI(M) leader and convenor of the Left Democratic Front. Jayarajan was seen pushing the men away as they approached him.

The two men were later identified as Congress Mattannur block president Farzin Majid and secretary R.K. Navin. They were later arrested.

Meanwhile, the incident came as a shock to many of the co-passengers, on the same flight. “The behaviour of the two men seemed unusual even while they were at the airport, waiting to board the flight. They were making unnecessary provocations even while they were talking to the police,” said Bindu VC, one of the passengers who were on the flight from Kannur to Trivandrum, when the incident took place.

She said that the two men, who were one of the last few people to board the flight, got up from their seats and began sloganeering immediately after the flight landed. “They got up even before the passengers were asked to remove the seat belts. The incident caught the attention of the passengers when we heard the cabin crew strongly warning the protesters to remain seated,” recalls Bindu.

She also adds that since many of the passengers were not aware of what was going on, most of them got a bit anxious seeing all the commotion.

The incident has been portrayed by both the parties in two different ways. While the ruling Communitst party alleges that the incident was an attempt to assault the Chief Minister, the Congress-led Opposition termed the demonstration as a “democratic and peaceful protest”.

Meanwhile, both the fronts took to the streets late on Monday evening as the news of the in-flight protest broke out. It was reported that several workers from both the parties were injured in clashes that took place in various parts of the state. In the state capital of Thiruvananthapuram, the KPCC office was attacked by CPI(M) workers. Police had beefed up the security in party offices of both the parties.

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