Sun, 18 Sep 2022 03:58 PM IST
Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan stepped up his criticism of the Left government and Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Sunday, accusing the latter of instructing police not to file a case against him after he was heckled at Kannur University in 2019.
Whether the direction merely shows favouritism towards those responsible or it was part of the alleged conspiracy to "attack" him has to be ascertained, Khan said and asked the media to investigate it.
His remarks come a day after the CPI(M) accused him of launching "false campaigns" against the regime.
Speaking to reporters at Aluva, the Governor said, "The incharge of the Home Department, the Chief Minister, had given specific instructions not to report it. Police were given instructions not to take cognisance. This was a cognizable offence under the IPC. " He said that the IPC clearly states that if anyone tries to "intimidate" or "overcome" the President of India or a Governor from discharging their duties, then it is a cognizable offence punishable by imprisonment of up to seven years and fine.
"Now, I leave it to you, the press people, to find out whether it was a conspiracy or whether it was favouritism that we see everywhere," he said.
Khan's claims about what happened at Kannur University in 2019 were dismissed by CPI(M) state secretary M V Govindan in a press conference in Thiruvananthapuram on Saturday, saying it was a spontaneous protest with no conspiracy behind it.
He had also targeted the Governor for making allegations against Kannur VC Gopinath Ravindran and eminent historian Irfan Habib in connection with the incident.
The Kerela Governor, on Sunday, said that back then he had thought that it was merely the doing of historian Irfan Habib, "who used to run a trade union" and has allegedly had "several physical encounters".
"Now I am convinced that this was a conspiracy where the Vice Chancellor (VC) of Kannur University was used to ensure that I am present there so that I can be attacked. That is why I am raising this issue now.
"It took me time to understand that this was not an isolated incident. I have said it before and I am repeating it, there are certain ideologies, I have not named anybody, who believe in use of force, in applying pressure, to silence voices," he said.
He was referring to the alleged heckling he received when he arrived at Kannur University to inaugurate the Indian History Congress in December 2019. As the Governor prepared to speak, the majority of the delegates in attendance rose in protest of his stance on the Citizenship Amendment Act, which was a hot topic at the time.
(With PTI Inputs)