The Bharatiya Janata Party has called for a 12-hour statewide strike in Kerala on Thursday, October 13, following the murder of one of its workers, Remith, in Kannur district on Wednesday. BJP President Amit Shah called the killing a "matter of grave concern" and said it "smacks of political vendetta". Party spokesperson GVL Narasimha Rao has demanded that the Central Bureau of Investigation take up the case, saying the BJP had no faith in the state police and the ruling Left Democratic Front.
However, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, who contested the Assembly elections in May from Kannur, accused the BJP and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh of spreading violence in the state. "They are committing murders and spreading lies and misunderstandings among people," he said. General Secretary of the Communist Party of India(Marxist) Sitaram Yechury also accused the BJP and RSS of creating an "atmosphere of violence" in Kerala. "To blame the CPI(M) is total fabrication," he said.
Remith's murder is suspected to be in retaliation to the killing of a Left party worker in Kannur on Monday. There have been several reports of clashes between the two political parties in the state since the CPI(M)-led LDF government came to power, following the Assembly elections in Kerala on May 16.