Thiruvananthapuram: The ruling and opposition members locked horns in the Kerala Assembly on Tuesday on handing over the sensational murder of two Youth Congress activists in Kasaragod district last year to the CBI.

While the opposition Congress-led UDF accused the Left government of trying to derail the probe to protect the CPI-M activists accused in the case, chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan made it clear that the government had decided to file an appeal as it was not in favour of the single bench's decision to hand over the case to the investigating agency.

His statement in the Assembly comes a day after the Central agency had accused the state police of not handing over relevant documents for the probe.

"The prosecution has taken appropriate action with regard to the case and the government has been extending all help," the CM said.

"In the high court verdict, many observations have been made against which the government has filed the appeal," Vijayan told the house while replying to a notice for an adjournment motion by the UDF, seeking a debate on the issue.

The chief minister also justified bringing lawyers from Delhi to argue against handing over the case to CBI, saying "It is not a new practice."

Vijayan's remark that the issue was not of any "immediate importance" to be discussed in the Assembly created ruckus as opposition members stood up in protest.

The House also witnessed heated exchanges over some objectionable terms allegedly used by industries minister EP Jayarajan during the proceedings.

"We are not satisfied with the single bench verdict handing over the case to the CBI. We have all the right to go for an appeal against it. The division bench of the high court has posted the case for order," Vijayan said.

Meanwhile, Shafi Parambil (Congress) alleged that the government and chief minister were trying to derail the probe and thus protect the accused, who are CPI(M) party workers.

The police was not handing over the case diary and other relevant documents to the CBI as part of this plan, he alleged and hit out at the government for spending a huge amount from the state exchequer to "protect" culprits involved in the shocking crime.

After the CM’s reply, the Speaker P Sreeramakrushnan declined leave for the motion, prompting the opposition members to stage a walkout.

Two Youth Congress workers, Kripesh (20) and Sharth Lal (24), were hacked to death, allegedly by CPI(M) workers, at Periya in Kasaragod district last year.

The Central agency mentioned about the alleged non- cooperation by the crime branch wing of state police in the status report of the probe submitted by the CBI investigation officer before the Chief Judicial Magistrate Court here.

Observing serious lapses in the police investigation, the court last September handed over the case to the Central Bureau of Investigation after dismissing the charge sheet filed by the crime branch.

The parents of the victims had moved the court seeking a CBI probe, saying police investigation was not on the right track.

The state government had challenged the single bench order for conducting a CBI probe, but a division bench declined to stay it.

With PTI Inputs