Anti-Sterlite protest: DMK demands CM`s resignation, calls for TN bandh

Friday, 25 May, 2018

"We have confirmation of 12 people being killed in police firing".

Protesters in Tuticorin, almost 600 km from Chennai, had clashed with police protesting the proposed expansion of a copper smelter of Sterlite Copper, a unit of the Vedanta group, over pollution concerns.

DMK says instead of an all-party protest, a Tamil Nadu bandh would be observed on 25 May to condemn the police action Sterlite protests at Tuticorin.

The plant, owned by Sterlite, a subsidiary of Vedanta, was shut down in March by pollution regulators, but its possible reopening on June 6 sparked angry demonstrations.

"State government continues to respect views of people on Sterlite issue". Internet services in Tuticorin and adjoining districts of Tirunelveli and Kanyakumari have been suspended till May 27 to prevent the spread of rumours through social media.

Asked whether CRPF is being called in, Nanduri said no such decision has been taken but the situation is still tense. My thoughts are with the bereaved families.

In addition to a CBI probe in the matter, the petitioner also prays for compensation to be awarded to the kin of those who lost their lives in the police firing, as well as to the victims who sustained serious injuries. "When someone hits you, you naturally tend to defend on such situations, no one acts in a pre-planned manner", he wrote on Twitter.

"At this critical hour, I appeal to all sections of society to be calm and help in maintaining the peace in the state", Tamil Nadu Gov. Banwarilal Purohit said in a statement.

In 2013, people complained that they were facing difficulties to breathe, nausea, throat infection and alleged a gas leak from Sterlite Industries plant.

He said there has been property damage worth Rs29 lakh since Tuesday and estimated losses over a crore rupees from 98 vehicles that were burnt. Yesterday, DMK leader Stalin, who was holding a protest outside Tamil Nadu secretariat, was also detained by the police.

A PIL praying for a probe led by a District judge was filed in the Madras High Court on May 23, while the National Human Rights Commission approached the Delhi High Court on May 24 seeking a direction to carry out a probe in Thoothukudi. This plea will be heard on Friday by the court.

The sources further told Express that apart from top officials including Agriculture Secretary Gagandeep Singh Bedi and Transport Secretary PWC Davidar, Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) law, a total of 3,000 policemen are patrolling the streets of Thoothukudi.

Earlier on Thursday, authorities cut the power to the smelter.