Kerala Governor Slams Student Activists Amid Huge Protest

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SFI has been staging widespread protests against Arif Mohammed Khan (File)

Calicut/New Delhi:

Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan yesterday hit out at the student activists as he visited the Calicut University days after his vehicle was allegedly struck by members of the Students Federation of India (SFI) – the student wing of the ruling CPI(M).

The Governor has claimed that the Chief Minister was behind the conspiracy to attack him. This time too, he reiterated that Pinarayi Vijayan has sponsored these protests.

Mr Khan said he was not scared of anyone and alleged that the protesting students were “criminals” hired by Mr Vijayan. “They are all criminals. They have been hired by the chief minister. Whatever protest is there, it is sponsored by the chief minister personally,” Mr Khan said.

A massive protest was held outside the Calicut University by the SFI yesterday ahead of Governor Khan’s visit.

The SFI has been staging widespread protests against the Governor alleging that he has been pushing the BJP-RSS nominees to the senate of various universities in Kerala.

Responding to the allegations, the Governor said he was not accountable to anyone except the President of India. “I recommended the names after considering the nominations received from various sources. I am accountable only to the President of India. Ultimately it is my discretion. Why should I explain it to them? I am not accountable to criminals,” Mr Khan said.

Earlier this month, Mr Khan accused Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan of “conspiring to physically harm him” after his vehicle was allegedly struck by the members of the SFI.

This incident took place while the Governor was on his way to the Thiruvananthapuram International Airport to leave for New Delhi. Sources said that black flags were waved at Governor Khan at three places and his car was hit by protesters at two of them.

Governor Khan condemned the incident and the alleged deteriorating state of democracy in Kerala. He stressed that political disagreement should not lead to physical violence. “What will the poor police do when the Chief Minister is directing them?” he had alleged.

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