Uproar in Kerala over government’s move to grant remission to TP Chandrasekharan murder convicts

Leader of Opposition in the state assembly VD Satheesan said the government was trying to protect the criminals who killed Chandrasekharan by hacking him 51 times.


Published Jun 22, 2024 | 6:59 PM Updated Jun 22, 2024 | 7:33 PM

Kerala speaker on TP Chandrasekharan murder convicts' remission

The Kerala government’s purported move to grant remission to three of the 12 convicts sentenced to life in the sensational TP Chandrasekharan murder case of 2012 on Saturday, 22 June, kicked off a political storm in the state with the Congress-led UDF and the BJP criticising the Left administration.

AICC general secretary and MP from Alappuzha KC Venugopal said not just the Congress, but the whole of Kerala will “strongly oppose” the government’s attempt.

Leader of Opposition in the state Assembly VD Satheesan said that it was a “strange” decision on the part of the government as considering the convicts for remission would be a violation of the High Court verdict denying the same to them.

He alleged that it indicates that the government was trying to protect the criminals who killed Chandrasekharan by hacking him 51 times.

Satheesan claimed that the government had granted the convicts parole several times, provided them five-star facilities in the prison, and enabled them to enter into shady financial deals from within the jail.

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‘CPI(M) protecting criminals’

“The CPI(M) has become a party that protects criminals who do not hesitate to do anything. They are still arrogant and believe they can do anything as they have power,” he alleged.

“What authority do they or the Jail Superintendent have to grant remission to the convicts when the high court has prohibited it?” Satheesan asked.

Despite suffering a major setback in Lok Sabha polls, the ruling CPI(M) in the state was continuing to make “mistakes” and was not ready to learn its lesson or correct itself, the opposition leader said.

He said that the convicts will not be permitted any kind of remission and any move to grant the same would be opposed strongly by the UDF.

UDF MLA and Chandrasekharan’s wife KK Rema expressed shock over the development, saying it was “unexpected” as there was a high court order prohibiting any remission to the convicts.

While handing out life sentences to 12 convicts in the case, the high court in its 27 February order had said that nine of them would not be entitled to remission before completing 20 years of imprisonment.

Of the nine, TK Rajeesh, KK Muhammed Shafi and S Sijith are the three convicts being purportedly considered for remission.

Rema said that the Jail Superintendent on his own could not have taken this decision without the knowledge and backing of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan who is also in-charge of the Home Department.

“A lot of thought and planning has gone into it. It is a serious matter. They (government) are again and again proving that they are with the convicts,” she said.

The government’s move would be opposed both legally and politically, she said adding that she will also meet the Governor of Kerala on the issue. “We cannot accept it no matter what,” Rema said.

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‘Government move not surprising’

Meanwhile, BJP state president K Surendran said that the government move was not surprising.

He claimed, in a Facebook post, that no Malayali would believe that jail laws were applicable to the convicts in prison.

“They (convicts) were allowed home-made variety of food, alcohol, drugs if needed, and all the latest versions of communication. Not just phone calls and WhatsApp, but Facebook and Instagram and more,” he alleged.

Surendran alleged that neither the UDF nor Satheesan or Rema would be shocked by the development and they were only acting like that.

Chandrasekharan (52) was hacked to death by a gang while he was returning home on his bike.

The then UDF government in Kerala constituted a special investigation team to probe the case.

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