Staff Reporter

TIRUNELVELI: Tension prevailed at Tenkasi in Tirunelveli district on Friday night after a three-member gang attacked Tamil Nadu Muslim Munnetra Kazhagam Tirunelveli district president S. Maideen Sait Khan (40).

Quoting doctors, who operated upon him at Tirunelveli Medical College Hospital (TVMCH), police sources said Mr. Khan's condition was "stable".

When Mr. Khan was standing near an eatery on Amman Sannidhi around 8.30 p.m., the gang, which came in an autorickshaw, attacked him with a sickle. He sustained injuries, including a deep gash on the neck. Following the incident, the windscreen of a bus was smashed at Tenkasi, forcing officials to suspend bus services to and from Tenkasi. Stones were hurled at shops.

Since a large number of TMMK supporters gathered at the TVMCH, a strong police force, led by Tirunelveli City Commissioner of Police Ashok Kumar Das, was deployed in and around the hospital. When Hindu Munnani activist Kumar Pandian was murdered on December 17 last at Tenkasi, Hindu organisations had demanded the arrest of Mr. Khan, alleging that he was behind the incident.

The Collector, G. Prakash, who came to the hospital, told reporters that security had been beefed up at Tenkasi.