It was on 29th March 1943, 72 years back, that four young communist comrades of Malabar (Kerala) were hanged in the Cannanore (Kannur) Central Jail on charges of fighting against the imperialist British rule. They were implicated in an incident in Kayyur in Malabar in which a police constable died. They are Coms. Kunhambu, Chirukandan, Aboobacker and Appu, who are called the Kayyur Martyrs.
The case was foisted by the British to suppress and eliminate the Party, which was growing strong in Malabar, under the leadership of Com.Krishna Pillai, EMS and AKG. Before the hanging was to take place, Com. P.C.Joshi, then General Secretary of the Communist Party and Com. P. Sundarayya, along with P.Krishna Pillai visited them. It was an emotional meet, but the jailed comrades who were going to be hanged within days, assured the leaders that they are honoured to sacrifice their lives for the party and for the freedom of the country.
What these valiant martyrs told the party leaders, when they met in jail, is quoted below as told by Com.P.C.Joshi himself:
“KUMHAMBU, who was in the first cell, began:-
“The Party made me capable of doing whatever I did for the people. If the Party thinks I have done my duty, that is all I ever desired.”
APPU said: –
“You have brought great news of the growing strength of the Party. We will now mount the gallows with added strength. We joined the Party to fight and die for the freedom of the country.”
“We are only four kisan sons. But India’s millions are kisans. We can be hanged, but they can’t be destroyed. This is what has sustained us all through. These letters from all over the country make us feel sorry that we can’t live longer to serve them. We have known no other regret. If we had more lives we would have died over and over again for our cause.” He had taken a leading part in two kisan struggles.
ABU BAKER was in the last:-
“We have drawn inspiration from the life of our martyrs. We never dreamt that we will share the honour of being one of them, Tell all the Comrades that we will mount the gallows, fearlessly. My mother, is very old. Cheer her up. My brothers are very young. Educate them for Party work. I was the eldest member of the family. They have nobody left to look after them.”
They were courageous till the last. Their last words before their ultimate sacrifice was “Inquilab Zindabad!”
Red Salute to these sons of the soil, whose memory will ever be remembered in the annals of the Communist movement and the country!
We got freedom by the sacrifices of thousands of such comrades. They died fighting against imperialism. We shall continue the fight against the inhuman imperialism and for a socialist society where all are equal and the needs of all are met.