Stray incidents of violence in TN, bus set ablaze

Jayalalithaa had appealed to the people of Kerala not to indulge in acts of "senseless violence and vandalism over an imaginary non-issue".

Chennai: Amid raging row over the Mullaperiyar
dam issue, stray violence was reported in some parts of Tamil Nadu on Wednesday by some protesters setting a bus on fire and
targetting commercial establishments owned by Keralites.

The incidents came two days after some anti-social
elements allegedly pelted stones at Ayyappa devotees from
Tamil Nadu in Iddukki district where the 116-year-old dam that
has triggered a fresh war of words, is located.

In Chennai a few shops, including a hotel, came under
attack even as police foiled a bid to target a popular
Kerala-based jewellery showroom, police said.

Security has been stepped up in the city as the row over
the dam escalated with both Tamil Nadu and Kerala upping the
ante on the issue.

Jayalalithaa had appealed to the people of Kerala not to
indulge in acts of "senseless violence and vandalism over an
imaginary non-issue".

On the other hand, an all-party meeting in Kerala
yesterday stuck to the state`s demand for a new dam in place
of the existing one, disregarding opposition by Tamil Nadu
which insists that the present structure is safe.

A Kerala-bound bus was set ablaze in Gudalur in Theni
district by some protesters after they asked the passengers to
alight.

In Coimbatore, 40 persons, belonging to two different
organisations, were arrested when they attempted to force some
shopowners, particularly jewellery establishments run by
Kerala-based Groups, to down shutters.

Fifteen persons, belonging to `Tamil Deshiya Pothuvudamai
Katchi`, raised slogans and asked the jewellers and some
others to close shop, police said.

A Keralite`s bakery was attacked allegedly by some members
belonging to the `Naam Tamizhar Katchi`, who forcibly downed
its shutters. They were arrested, police added.

PTI

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