The renaming of a road in Kerala’s Kasargod district as Gaza Street, seen as a reference to the disputed strip of land between Israel and Egypt, has drawn the attention of police and intelligence agencies. A signboard reading ‘Gaza Street’ has been put up at the beginning of the road, near the Juma Masjid in Thuruthi here, renamed apparently after the tiny Palestinian self-governing territory. Police and intelligence departments are keenly looking into all aspects including possible radical influence behind the naming, as a majority among the 21 Keralite youths, who went missing and suspected to have joined terror outfit ISIS recently, hailed from Kasaragod.
A top police officer said police was keeping a close watch on all developments in the district. “The naming of the road as Gaza Street has come to our notice. We are closely monitoring all such developments,” he told PTI. Sameera Abdul Razak, Thuruthi Municipality ward Councillor and IUML member, said she had attended the inauguration ceremony of the road but was unaware about other details. “I was invited to the road inauguration and I attended the function. I do not know who renamed it as Gaza Street. It was earlier known as T S Colony,” she told PTI.
Kasaragod district panchayat president AGC Basheer had inaugurated the road last month. However, he said he was not the person who was supposed to inaugurate the rechristened street and had to step in at the last moment. He also said he did not know other details behind the naming of the road. Local BJP leaders here alleged that there were conscious attempts being made to change the names of different streets and roads in Kasaragod.