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Thursday, 10 November 2011

Mass protest against Jayarajan Judgment

Setting the stage for a confrontation with the judiciary, Kerala’s opposition Communist Party of India (Marxist) on Wednesday called mass protests against the high court verdict sentencing party leader M V Jayarajan to six months imprisonment in a contempt of court case.

The decision to wage a political fight against the judiciary was announced by party secretary Pinarayi Vijayan after visiting Jayarajan, a member of the party secretariat, at the Poojappura Central jail here along with former home minister and deputy leader of opposition Kodiyeri Balakrishnan.

Activists of the CPM and the party’s mass and class organisations will be staging demonstrations in front of the high court at Cochin, on Monday. The protests will be held from 10am to 5pm, Vijayan said.

He said that a close examination of the judgment had revealed that the high court had exceeded its limits. The judgment creates an impression that the court was trying to suppress people’s protests against injustices.

He said that the verdict also showed that the court was prejudiced against Jayarajan. The judges had first pronounced rigourous imprisonment but later changed it to simple imprisonment after finding that the law had no provision to award rigourous imprisonment in contempt of court cases.

Vijayan pointed out that the judges had also called Jayarajan a ‘worm’ in their verdict. “Calling people worms was highly improper in a democratic set up. The court should remember that the people are supreme in democracy,” he added.

The CPM politburo member pointed out that the division bench verdict in the contempt of court case had deviated from the essence of democracy and the basic principles of the constitution.

He clarified that the party’s struggle was not against the judiciary. “We are not against the judiciary. It is the only forum available to the people to seek protection from the excesses of the executive,” he added.

The CPM leader said that the party will also continue its legal battle against the high court verdict. He said that the party had taken steps to file an appeal in the Supreme Court.

Meanwhile, the Bharatiya Janata Party came out openly in support of Jayarajan. Party state president V Muralidharan said the high court verdict had given rise to a feeling that the court had acted in a vengeful manner against the CPM leader. Rejection of Jayarajan’s plea for suspension of the verdict to file an appeal in the apex court has strengthened this feeling among the general public.

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