Crew members and passengers forcibly disembarked

More than 30 buses of Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation, police vehicles and cars were damaged at different places of the district, leading to the suspension of transport service.

It was not clearly known how many vehicles were damaged by the arsonists in Paramakudi town, as the police received reports that buses were targeted by the miscreants near Kamudhi, Mudukulathur, Thiruvadanai, Rameswaram road and other places.

The protesters, who put up road blockade at different places, pelted stones on windscreens of buses. The bus crew members and passengers were forcibly disembarked by them. Many of them had to seek cover in different places.

The all women police station at Ponnaiyapuran in Paramakudi was attacked by the protesters in which a few policewomen were also injured. Since the incidents of stone pelting on buses poured in from different parts of the district, many of the bus crew drove the buses to the nearby depot. Some of them refused to operate the buses fearing for their life. Passengers were forced to take refuge in nearby places.

Some miscreants damaged the signals at the Paramakudi railway junction, leading to disruption of train services in the district.

Two express trains from Rameswaram to Chennai were stopped at Rameswaram. Similarly, a train from Rameswaram and Coimbatore was also suspended temporarily.

Collector V. Arun Roy told The Hindu that though the situation was tense in some parts of the district, it had been brought under control. Additional reinforcements were sought from other areas. He added that bus services were suspended in several areas as a precautionary measure. They would be gradually resumed depending upon the situation. As far as opening of schools and colleges were concerned, the administrators and managements of the institutions would run them depending on the local situation and section 144 promulgatory orders.

Meanwhile, a large number of policemen were posted in front of the government hospitals at Paramakudi and Ramanathapuram, where three bodies have been kept.

It was expected that the bodies would be handed over to the relatives after the end of the post-mortem on Monday.

Security has been tightened in and around the villages of the victims.