Thiruvananthapuram: CPI Thiruvananthapuram district secretary Adv. GR Anil criticized the recent hartals claiming that they were observed for bad means. He said that a particular political party which had called for unnecessary hartals, evoked violence and resulted in huge losses have compelled people to think about the negative effects of hartal. He was speaking at the Mathrubhumi International Festival of Letters (MBIFL) organized here at Kanakakkunnu Palace on Friday.
Member of Congress party, Raju P Nair stated that hartal is ‘injustice done by political parties to the public’. “Hartal is undemocratic. It suspends Indian constitution for 12 or 24 hours. The political parties should think of the sick people who are stuck in roads and railway stations when they are on the way to hospital”. He added that he is protesting against the nature of hartal. He also questioned the reason behind the recent hartals and said that they ridiculed the basic logic and reacting power of common people.
Former Doordarshan additional director K Kunhikrishnan said that he had been working outside Kerala for years and none of the other states were affected by hartals. He mentioned that no instances of violence were reported there. He also shared a terrible experience he had faced during a hartal in Kerala. He and his team at Doordarshan were attacked when they were travelling in car on a day of hartal. He said that the attackers poured petrol on their vehicle and the police saved them from death in
the most crucial moment.
Journalist Josy Joseph commented that Keralites celebrate hartals because they have a safe economy which is also a contribution of expats like him. He also quoted a study which said that decrease in number of working days increases efficiency. He also criticized the hartals which were observed on ridiculing topics.
When GR Anil expressed concern over increasing violence during hartals, Raju P Nair opposed it saying that condemning violence after declaring hartals is double standards. When the moderator asked the politicians to announce that they will work for eliminating hartals, GR Anil said that the party will never oppose hartal, but will strive to take stringent actions against violence. Raju concluded by saying that the campaigns against hartal has compelled the chief minister to call an all-party meeting to discuss the issue and it is a positive gesture. The session was moderated by Biju Mohan.