Kerala’s decision to commute 1,850 sentences faces flak

Thiruvananthapuram, Feb 18 (IANS) The Kerala unit of the BJP on Saturday strongly objected to the CPI-M-led Left government’s decision to commute the sentences of 1,850 prisoners lodged in various jails in the state.

Former state BJP President V. Muraleedharan in a statement issued here, said the move clearly showed that the Pinarayi Vijayan government was not with the people but with the criminals in the state.

Muraleedharan said: “The Vijayan government spoke of women’s security during the assembly polls and today they have used their special powers to commute the sentences of prisoners, including those who are in jail raping and outraging the modesty of women.”

“We will be apprising the Kerala Governor P. Sathasivam of this shocking act,” he said.

The government move comes at a time when figures show that attack on women rose substantially in 2016 as compared to 2015 in the state, he said.

“Of these, rape cases alone registered 30 per cent rise during the period,” said the BJP leader.

The Vijayan government has sent the list of prisoners to Sathasivam for his accent.

The Governor’s office, meanwhile, on Saturday issued a statement, saying that he has returned the file pertaining to the release to the government on February 15, seeking some details and clarification in view of the latest judgement of the Supreme Court.