Thiruvananthapuram: Veteran Kerala Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leader P Jayarajan was Wednesday arrested and jailed in connection with the murder of Indian Union Muslim League worker Abdul Shukoor in February this year.
Jayarajan, who was arrested in Kannur after being summoned for questioning for the third time, is the Kannur district CPI-M secretary. He was sent to judicial custody for two weeks and will be lodged in the Kannur jail.
A huge crowd of party supporters, including legislators, accompanied Jayarajan to the police office where he was summoned for questioning.
Soon after the arrest, angry party activists pelted stones at the police convoy taking Jayarajan to court.
Police have charged Jayarajan with failing to do anything despite prior knowledge of the murder.
He told reporters that he was being framed.
"The Congress, the Muslim League and the police have all conspired to implicate me in this case, in which there is no evidence against me. I am not going to be deterred by all this," he said.
More than two dozen people belonging to the CPI-M and its affiliates have been arrested in the murder of the 21-year-old Shukoor.
According to police, Shukoor was allegedly murdered in retaliation for an attack by suspected Muslim League workers on Jayarajan and CPI-M leader TV Rajesh in February last year.
The Muslim League is the second biggest constituent of the ruling Congress-led United Democratic Front.
CPI-M politburo member and senior legislator Kodiyeri Balakrishnan reacted by saying that the Congress-led government is being used by the Muslim League to tarnish the CPI-M in Kannur.
"... this is not the first time that our party leaders are being falsely implicated. We will deal with this politically and legally because we know there is no truth in this case against Jayarajan," said Balakrishnan.