The BJP candidate of Alappuzha assembly constituency, Sandeep Vachaspati, paid floral tributes to Punnapra-Vayalar Martyrs before filing his nomination. In October 1946, the common people of Punnapra and Vayalar were massacred by the forces of the Travancore princely state. The Communist Party and the left-leaning academicians had incorporated this as a ‘communist uprising’ against the Travancore kingdom, a claim which is entirely bogus.
Even though the total number of people killed in the firing is unknown, historians estimate that the tally is above a thousand deaths.
‘The mass genocide in Punnapra Vayalar is the greatest betrayal in history. Communist leaders pushed ordinary workers making them believe that salt and pulses come from guns. Would responsible leadership do that? There are no counts on how many people died there. I went there to pay homage to those ordinary people who had been deceived and died at the words of the leaders,’ he said.
Sandeep Vachaspati’s floral tribute at the memorial drew sharp reaction from the Communist Parties. The Communist Party’s betrayal of common people back in 1946 has now become a national talking point.