Acclaimed Malayalam poet K Sreekumar was attacked allegedly by Right-wing activists at Kottukkal, Kerala on Monday evening.
Sreekumar said his car was stopped by assailants allegedly from the RSS, who then threatened and hurled abuses at him. Six people including a Panchayat member have been arrested.
Sreekumar was attacked when he was returning after addressing a cultural gathering where he had reportedly spoken against the Hindutva forces over their stand in the Vadayambady ‘caste wall’ controversy.
On the basis of the poet's complaint, a case was registered against the RSS workers, police said.
Superintendent of Police (Rural), Kollam, B Asokan told PTI that a case was registered against 15 RSS workers, of whom six were arrested.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan's office has also directed the police to take stringent action and launch a thorough probe into the incident.
The issue was also raised in the Kerala Assembly today.
Replying to the submission on the matter by Mulakara Ratnakaran of the CPI, the chief minister said that a group of 15 RSS/BJP workers led by a panchayat member Dipu were behind the incident.
Cases have been registered against 15 people under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and six have been arrested so far, he said.
There has been an increase in attacks on the freedom of expression in the country since the past few years, Vijayan said, adding that M M Kalburgi, Govind Pansare and Gauri Lankesh had lost their lives due to such intolerance.
In Kerala also renowned writer M T Vasudevan Nair and film maker Kamal were among those who had been threatened. Such incidents would be dealt with sternly and will not be allowed to be repeated, he said.
The government will provide necessary protection to ensure that everyone has the right to freedom of expression, the chief minister said.
Kerala stands out as an island of hope, when attacks on freedom of expression are taking place elsewhere in the country, he said.
(Inputs from agencies)