Kerala: Rahul Gandhi’s Yatra Takes A Break On The Day PFI Calls For A State-Wide Bandh

Ksheera Sagar

Sep 23, 2022, 01:52 PM | Updated 01:54 PM IST

Congress leaders at the yatra. (Picture: Twitter)
Congress leaders at the yatra. (Picture: Twitter)
  • The Kerala High Court meanwhile took suo moto cognizance of the one-day bandh and initiated a case against the PFI.
  • Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Yatra announced today morning that it would take a break and restart on Saturday (24 September).

    The Wayanad MP's padyatra had reached Ernakulam and kickstarted the march from Juma Masjid on Thursday. He also held a press conference in Ernakulam on Thursday afternoon, where he said the response received by the yatra in Kerala was overwhelming.

    On Friday morning, Congress tweeted saying “Today, we rest and strengthen our resolve to save India from hate and democratic backsliding. We will be back tomorrow and move to Thrissur to continue our fight.”

    On the same day, the Popular Front Of India (PFI) called for a state-wide bandh in Kerala on Friday to protest the arrest of its leaders by the NIA across the country.

    Even as the Kerala High Court took suo moto cognizance of the one-day bandh and initiated a case, protestors took to the streets and incidents of stone pelting and damaging vehicles were reported across Kerala.

    The PFI had called for a dawn-to-dusk hartal and its state committee called the arrest of its leaders part of 'state-sponsored terrorism'.

    “A hartal will be observed in the state on September 23 against the RSS-controlled fascist government's attempt to silence dissenting voices using the central agencies," A Abdul Sathar, state general secretary, PFI, said, as reported by PTI.

    PFI workers had already taken to the streets in places where its leaders were taken into custody and their houses raided by the NIA.

    Kerala BJP charged the Left government in the state with ‘showing a soft approach towards the PFI eyeing vote bank despite the strong stand taken by the High Court against unnecessary hartals‘.

    The party’s state president K Surendran said the state authorities should be ready to ensure adequate security for people's life and property, given that all the previous hartals called by the PFI had ended in riots.

    News reports show state transport buses attacked in Alappuzha, Kozhikode and Wayanad.

    Miffed with the bandh, the court said hartal was banned by it earlier and the destruction of the public property cannot be accepted.

    The court also asked the state administration to take stern action against those who violate the court order banning hartals. It asked the government to use all possible means to stop any form of violence.

    Also Read: After PFI crackdown, thinking Muslims must ask themselves 10 questions

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