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Tension grips Alanganallur, as police detain 240 “Jallikattu” protesters

Last Modified Tuesday, 17 January 2017 (11:48 IST)
Madurai: A highly tense situation is prevailing in in this district since this morning after the police forcibly evicted and detained 240 persons, including three women for staging a 21-hour-long dharna, demanding to lift the ban on (bull taming) events. A group of youths, including students were staging a dharna in Alanganallur since yesterday. The agitators continued their dharna till 0600 hours this morning. They spent overnight on open ground. Senior police officials asked the agitators to disperse immediately as it was an unlawful assembly.

Since the youths failed to withdraw their stir, police swung into action, forcibly evicted them into police vans and detained them in marriage halls at Sholavandan and Vadipatti. Irate over the police action, more than 2,000 men and women resorted to road-roko agitation at Alanganallur to condemn the police action and demanded immediate release of all the arrested persons. Superintendent of Police Vijayendra S.Bidari, who rushed to Alanganallur held talks with the agitators. He said the youths were taken into preventive custody only and all of them will be released later in the day.
He said the police were extending full support to the people for the past few days and demanded public cooperation to maintain law and order. But, however, the agitators refuse to accept Bidari’s request and said they will continue their protest till the release of arrested persons. Members of various political parties, including DMK MLA P.Moorthy also joined the protest. In the meantime, a section of agitators allegedly hurled water packets on AIADMK MLA K.Manickam, representing Sholavandam assembly constituency in Madurai, when he came to Alanganallur to express solidarity with the agitating people.
The agitators shouted slogans against him and asked him to go back. A large number of police personnel were deployed in Alanganallur to prevent any untoward incidents. Meanwhile, reports reaching here said similar protests condemning the police action and demanding the immediate release of detained persons were being held in various parts of the State. (UNI)
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