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Mammootty for Left youth role in containing communalism


Chennai : Malayalam superstar Mammootty Tuesday stressed that the Gujarat carnage in 2002 "would not have happened" if the Communist Party of India-Marxist's (CPI-M) youth wing had been stronger in that state.

Mammooty, who has a huge fan following in Tamil Nadu as well, was addressing thousands of youth who had gathered here for the inaugural session of the eighth national conference of the Democratic Youth Federation India (DYFI).

In 2002, statewide communal violence in Gujarat left at least 1,000 people – a majority of them Muslims – dead and many more homeless. The riots were sparked off by the burning of a train coach in Godhra in which 59 Hindu passengers were killed on Feb 27, 2002.

Mammootty also saw a greater role for Left parties in strife-torn Jammu and Kashmir.

"I memorise all my scripts for films, but what I am saying today is from my heart," he said.

The actor, who has acted in over 300 films, is the chairman of the Left party's three commercial TV channels, including the popular Kairali channel.

The DYFI conclave began Monday with a rally led by politburo member Sitaram Yechuri. Nearly 100,000 activists are taking part in the event that will conclude May 11.