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Dalit activists removed by police

LOUD EMPHASIS: Dalit activists taken into custody by the police in the city on Thursday when they attempted to picket the District Police office. Photo: M. Periasamy

LOUD EMPHASIS: Dalit activists taken into custody by the police in the city on Thursday when they attempted to picket the District Police office. Photo: M. Periasamy  

Arrest of inspector demanded for construction worker's death

Staff Reporter

COIMBATORE: As many as 61 persons, including three women, belonging to Adi Tamizhar Peravai were removed by the police, when they attempted to picket the office of the Superintendent of Police, Coimbatore Rural District, on Thursday. They demanded the arrest of Sulur Police Inspector with regard to the self-immolation of a construction worker.

It may be recalled that the worker, N. Sampath of Sulur, presented a petition to the Collector at the grievance day meeting on April 25 accusing a trader Shanmugam of having abused him using his caste name.

The petitioner also accused the police of acting in a "partisan" manner in favour of the accused and ill-treating the complainant. Minutes after presenting the petition, he immolated himself at the Collectorate. He died at the CMC Hospital on April 28.

Review against atrocities

Following the death, dalit activists demanded action against the police inspector for having failed to act on the complaint and held him responsible for the death.

The dalit outfits sought a review of the manner in which the police handled complaints relating to prevention of atrocities on SC/ST and protection of civil rights over the last five years.

Meanwhile, the Adi Tamizhar Peravai had announced an agitation to picket the office of the SP, Coimbatore Rural District on Thursday, demanding the arrest of the Sulur Police Inspector. Anticipating the police to pre-empt their agitation plan, the activists gathered on the Combined Court complex building, keeping the police on tenterhooks.

Following the development, security cordon was thrown around the SP office on Railway Station Road. When the activists started marching in batches towards the SP office through the rear gate of the court premises, raising slogans, and demanding the arrest of the inspector, the police removed them.

Attempts by the cadre to resist and overpower the police to enter the SP office led to a commotion. Traffic on the busy stretch was briefly disrupted following the agitation. They were removed under Criminal Procedure Code section 151, to prevent breach of public peace.

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