In a shocking and dastardly incident, the SFI students of the Government Sanskrit College at Trivandrum, a stone throw-away from the Government Secretariat and the CPM'sHQ, AKG Centre, attacked and abused their senior lecturer in Sanskrit Dr Unnikrishnan for the simple reason that he wore Rakhi, the symbol of brotherhood and national bonding.
?Raksha Bandhan? day is observed round the second week of August and lakhs of people irrespective of politics, religion and gender wear Rakhis all over Kerala. Right from the seventies, two groups in Kerala have been opposing this symbol of nationality, i.e. CPM and Islamic extremists. Innumerable were the cases reported of CPM/SFI waylaying persons wearing Rakhi and breaking it. In Muslim pockets, same was the strategy of Islamic fanatics. But with nationalist forces hitting back with equal strength, this became weakened and wearing a Rakhi became a symbol of Hindu pride and strength.
Dr Unnikrishnan, a leading activist of the Vishwa Sanskrita Pratishthan (VSP), got recently appointed as senior lecturer in the Government Sanskrit College. On August 18, three SFI activists Renjith, Sabu and Sebasitian came to him when he was taking classes and asked him to remove the Rakhi he was wearing. He was asked to put it in his pocket or keep it at home. He was warned that this is a red fort and hence no symbol of ?RSS? should be there in the campus. Dr Unnikrishnan refused to remove the Rakhi saying it was a symbol of his religious and national belief. The SFI goons threatened him of dire consequences. Dr Unnikrishnan reported this to the Principal. But on August 21, as Dr Unnikrishnan was sitting in his room in the college, a gang of 30 SFI activists led by college union chairman Robin barged into the room, started abusing him in the most filthy language, man-handled him and forcibly broke the Rakhi and a special thread tied after puja at Mookambia Temple in Kollur, Karnataka. A dazed Unnikrishnan, who had least expected it, wrote a written complaint to the Principal and the police. The police, who arrived late due to pressure from top SFI and CPM leaders, tried to protect the SFI students and water down the case.
In the last spell of the CPM rule during 1996-2001, a student belonging to the Congress-led Kerala Students Union (KSU) was attacked at the University College in Thiruvan-anthapuram (a red fort where no other students organisation is allowed to function) and the letters ?SFI? were imprinted on his back with a sharp knife. But now in this spell the SFI has shifted its preys from the student community to the teaching class, a measure of progress for the working class party'smonkey brigade!
Meanwhile, Dr Unnikrishnan has written a letter to the CPM State Secretary Pinarayi Vijayan asking him to ensure justice for him and to provide security for discharge of his duties as teacher.
The VSP has registered strong protest over the incident of insult to a strong symbol of nationalism from the CPM/SFI, which never considers India a single entity. They said that if the SFI men consider Rakhi, Ram, Krishna, Vedas, Upanishads and Bhagavad Gita the symbols of communalism, then they should stop studying Sanskrit, leave Sanskrit College and go to madrasas. The ABVP also led a huge protest march to the Secretariat. Leading poets and cultural icons of Kerala like Sugatha Kumari, Vishnu Narayanan Nampoothiri, P. Narayana Kurup, C.G. Rajagopal, Katoor Narayana Pillai have in a statement condemned this barbaric act.