A division bench of the Kerala High Court on Wednesday stayed a single judge’s order of a Central Bureau of Investigation inquiry into the murder of a Youth Congress leader in Kannur in February, IANS reported. The division bench ordered the stay after hearing the Kerala government’s appeal against an investigation by the central agency.

State Congress leader K Sudhakaran expressed concern over the stay and said the party would approach the Supreme Court against it. CPI(M) MLA AN Shamseer, who represents the Thalassery Assembly constituency in Kannur, welcomed the High Court’s decision.

“We have nothing to fear in this case even as four of the accused belong to our party,” he said. “We have ousted the four from the party. The one reason why we opposed the CBI inquiry was that the state police had done a clean job and arrested 11 accused.”

On February 12, unidentified persons, whom the Congress claimed were from the Communist Party of India (Marxist), hurled a crude bomb at Youth Congress worker Shuhaib and two other workers and then attacked them with sharp weapons. All three were taken to hospital but Shuhaib died on the way.

The Kerala High Court’s division bench will now hear the case on March 23.