Plea to restrain policefrom continuing arrests

‘No let-up in crackdown against anti-Sterlite protesters’

Published - June 15, 2018 01:05 am IST - MADURAI

Makkal Athikaram, a leftist organisation, on Thursday filed a public interest litigation petition before Madurai Bench of Madras High Court, seeking restraint against the Thoothukudi police from continuing the arrests of anti-Sterlite protesters and investigation in the case.

The petitioner, K. Kaliappan of Thanjavur, its State treasurer, said the unwarranted shooting by the police against the unarmed protesters had left at least 13 dead and many were injured. None of the organisations participating in the protests had resorted to violence and the agitation was largely peaceful, before the police opened fire, he said.

The police were continuing the crackdown against the protesters. False cases had been foisted against the innocent, people were being taken into illegal custody and there was a continued surveillance in Thoothukudi district, he said.

Makkal Athikaram members, who actively participated in the protests, were targeted and remanded even though they never indulged in any violence.

There was no prima facie case made out from the FIR registered against the members. The case should be investigated by a Special Investigation Team led by an officer not below the rank of DIG, the petitioner said.

Senior Counsel M. Ajmal Khan, representing the petitioner, said that as many as 243 cases were registered against the public and they were being remanded indiscriminately. Even though the case was transferred to CB-CID, the Thoothukudi police were still continuing with the illegal detentions. He said that the police should stop the detentions immediately.

A Division Bench of Justices C.T. Selvam and A.M. Basheer Ahamed adjourned the case to June 18.

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