3 police personnel hurt; windshield of vans damaged

Seventeen persons, including three police personnel, were injured in a clash between supporters of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and the Pattali Makkal Katchi in front of the head post office here on Thursday.

The injured included 10 PMK supporters, two AIADMK cadres, two autorickshaw drivers, Special Sub-Inspector Sheikh Imam Basha attached to the Thevanampattinam police station, woman SSI Sundari attached to the Cuddalore All Women Police Station and head constable Ravi attached to the New Town police station.

When police resorted to mild lathicharge, some persons belonging to both the parties suffered minor injuries. PMK supporters underwent treatment at the Cuddalore Headquarters Hospital where party founder S. Ramadoss called on them.

According to sources, AIADMK supporters had staged demonstration in front of the head post office to condemn “anti-people” policies of the Union government, the humiliation meted out to Chief Minister Jayalalithaa at the National Development Council meeting in Delhi, the inaction of the Centre in notifying the Cavuery Water Dispute Tribunal order in the gazette and to demand the supply of entire power generated from the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant and other power plants in Tamil Nadu to tide over the power crisis.

The agitation was led by N. Murugumaran, MLA, and legislators R. Rajendran, Selvi Ramajayam and M.P.S. Sivasubramanian participated. At that time, PMK supporters reportedly laid siege to the Collector’s Camp Office located 50 yards away from the venue of the AIADMK agitation to press for the lifting of the entry ban on PMK leaders.

Mr. Murugumaran reportedly observed that it was because of the AIADMK that political parties such as the PMK and the DMDK had got recognition. The PMK men who heard it were rattled by such an “irrelevant statement unconnected with the agitation staged by the ruling AIADMK.” Trouble started when some person reportedly threw a stone amid the AIADMK gathering. The cadres turned towards the PMK supporters and retaliated. When both the sides started throwing stones at each other, the police, who were present, used mild force to chase away the groups.

In the melee, three police personnel sustained injuries and windshields of two police vans and two autorickshaws were damaged. Traffic on the arterial Bharathi Road was disrupted for over two hours.

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