57-year-old Sasiperumal has been demanding prohibition of liquor sales in State

There was high drama when police forcibly moved Sasiperumal — who was fasting for 33 days demanding prohibition of liquor sales in the State — to a hospital.

Sasiperumal (57) went on fast on January 30 at a private residence in Abhiramapuram, demanding the closure of liquor shops in the State. On Sunday evening, police arrived at the venue of the fast and took him to the Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital. His health had been deteriorating in the past few weeks and his family was worried.

A volunteer alleged he was dragged into the ambulance.

“When he refused to get admitted, police pulled him on to the stretcher and took him in the ambulance. Even we wanted Mr. Sasiperumal to end his fast owing to his poor health and we had been persuading him. But using force to move him to the hospital is a brutal act and his family members became emotional,” the volunteer said.

Resident medical officer of GH J. Rajeswari said he had been admitted to the Intensive Medical Care Unit. “His pulse and blood pressure are normal. We will begin further investigation on him shortly,” she said.

Earlier, Prabhakar Thygarajan, a consultant physician who had examined Sasiperumal around 5 p.m. before he was moved to the hospital, said his kidney function had been affected. “He was completely dehydrated. Surprisingly, his blood pressure and heart beat are quite stable. I strongly advised Mr. Sasiperumal’s sons to admit him to a hospital right away,” he said.

Subsequent to the doctor’s visit, police arrived at the fast venue and asked him to end his fast immediately.

Human chain formed on Marina

Meanwhile, members of the Madhu Ozhippu Iyakkam formed a human chain on Marina Beach in support of his cause.

Senthil Arumugan, coordinator of the organisation, said the government should fulfil at least one of their demands which include barring sale of liquor to people below the age of 21, banning liquor shops in and around schools and hospitals, and increasing awareness on consumption of liquor. “Though prohibition of liquor is our aim, right now we want the government to yield to at least one of our demands,” he said.

More In: Chennai | News