PANAJI: Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) and All India Trade Union Congress’ (AITUC) state unit leaders have condemned the cowardly attack on senior CPI leader Govind Pansare in Kolhapur, and hoped that the Maharashtra government will leave no stone unturned to arrest the culprits and bring them to justice as early as possible.
Addressing the media during a protest, Raju Mangueshkar, Suhas Naik, Thalmaan Pereira, Christopher Fonseca and Prasanna Uttagi, at the Kranti Circle opposite KTC bus terminus, said, “You cannot gag a voice by killing a person instead his campaign will get a boost. Govind Pansare fought against communal hatred and hate politics in the country. You can only shoot a person but not his thoughts.”
Pansare, who led a campaign against road toll tax, was attacked by some unknown assailants in front of their house in Kolhapur. The incident took place around 8 am outside Ideal Housing Society, when the two were returning after their daily morning walk from Shivaji University in Kolhapur.
Pansare was hit by bullets on the nape of his neck while his wife Sau Uma Pansare suffered a single bullet injury. The duo was rushed to Astor Aadhar Hospital where they are undergoing surgery for bullet injuries.
CPI-M and AITUC leaders said that once he recovers from the attack, his movement will be strengthened. They also said that Pansare was an activist since student days and we have been given right to speech and expression by the Constitution of India.
“This was a pre-planned attack on Pansare in order to instill fear among his large followers who would be attending the CPI conference slated for February 17,’’ they said.
The CPI leaders said that this is second incident in Maharashtra after anti-superstition activist Narendra Dabholkar was shot dead in Pune in August 2013 but till date no arrest has been made.
Raju said that the attack was orchestrated by some politician as Pansare had planned around 100 such CPI conferences throughout Maharashtra.