Thiruvananthapuram, May 8: Kannur, which saw clashes between CPM and BJP-RSS workers after a local CPI-M leader was hacked to death at nearby Palloor in Mahe, witnessed a shutdown on Tuesday against renewed political violence. All shops and business establishments remained closed. Heavy deployment of police was seen in Kannur.

On Monday, Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) member K. Babu, 47, was slashed with swords by suspected Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) activists in Mahe, a three sq km area which is part of Puducherry and borders Kannur. Less than an hour later, Shanoj, a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) activist, was attacked with knives and died in a hospital.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Tuesday called the killings unfortunate. “The first murder took place in Mahe and hence the Puducherry Police is probing it while the second one is in our area. I have asked the police chief to see that nothing is left to chance and to also give all support to the police in Mahe,” he said while speaking in Thiruvananthapuram.

Senior CPI-M legislator E.P. Jayarajan said the RSS was behaving like the Taliban and “eliminating political rivals in the most horrendous manner”. CPI-M Kannur Lok Sabha member P.K. Sreemathi, who arrived here from Delhi on Tuesday, said this was a planned attack unleashed by the RSS who were out to destroy peace in the district.

State BJP President Kummanam Rajasekharan blamed the murders on the Home Department headed by Vijayan whose police, he said, were “unable to do anything to avoid such incidents”. Former Chief Minister and Congress leader Oommen Chandy blamed both the BJP and the CPI-M for the situation while state police chief Loknath Behra said he had spoken to Puducherry police chief. (With IANS inputs)