The auto-rickshaw driver, T. P. Vijayaraj, who set himself afire on Monday to protest against Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s visit to Madhya Pradesh, succumbed to his burns at the Government Medical College Hospital here on Tuesday.

The sources in the hospital told The Hindu that Vijayaraj died at 11.45 am “despite the best efforts put in by a team of doctors to save him.” The burns, a senior doctor said, were deep since he had drenched himself with petrol before setting himself on fire near Old Bus Stand.

As the news of his death spread, a strong crowd, including members of various Tamil outfits and political parties, gathered on the hospital premises. They raised slogans against a few State and national political parties blaming them for the death of the 28-year old youth. Workers of the VCK and the PMK attempted to block traffic near the Collectorate. Naam Thamizhar Movement’s founder leader Seeman visited the hospital.

Meanwhile Vijayaraj’s father R. Thangavelu submitted a petition to District Collector saying that he would accept the body provided Town Police, who are investigating the case, register cases under section 306 of the Indian Penal Code against a few Congress and BJP’s national leaders for “inviting Rajapaksa” as this had led to his son’s suicide. He urged the police to hand over him the photocopy of his son’s 36-page ‘last letter,’ which he had reportedly written prior to self-immolation and his statement from hospital bed before the magistrate.

More In: Tamil Nadu | National