One killed in police firing; several injured

One person was killed in police firing and several were injured as the protest against the nuclear power plant in Jaitapur turned violent on Monday.

Thirty protesters including Shiv Sena MLA Rajan Salvi were arrested, Ratnagiri Collector Madhukar Gaikwad told The Hindu. A protester was killed in the firing and a policeman was grievously injured in stone-throwing, he said.

?“Two separate incidents happened during the day,” Mr. Gaikwad said. “In the morning, more than 200 protesters under the leadership of Mr. Rajan Salvi created disturbance at the site of the project. They threw stones and set the grass there on fire.”

He said the Shiv Sena had launched a campaign to stop the construction work. “They tried to create a volatile situation in the morning. The police resorted to lathi-charge after some policemen were injured. The Deputy Superintendent of Police suffered a severe head injury. He had to undergo 23 stitches. A few protesters were also injured in the lathi-charge.”

He said there was another protest 10 km away from the project site in the afternoon, when around 700 to 800 local fishermen marched to the Nate police station and pelted it with stones for nearly two hours.

?“They burnt materials and destroyed the property of the station,” Mr. Gaikwad said. “The police resorted to lathi-charge. When they did not disperse, they used plastic bullets. When the crowd did not budge, police opened fire. One protester, who was injured in the firing, died. Fifty policemen were injured in the stone-pelting. The situation is now peaceful and under control.” ?

The Assembly was adjourned for the day after the Opposition insisted that Home Minister R.R. Patil make a detailed statement.

Mr. Patil confirmed that one person, Tabrez Sayekar, was killed in the firing against a mob of 600 which attacked the police station.