Bodies of deceased in anti-Sterlite protest to be preserved: Madras HC

Bodies of deceased in anti-Sterlite protest to be preserved: Madras HC

The protests demanding the closure of Vedanta group's Sterlite Copper plant over pollution concerns were going on in Tuticorin for over three months, but violence erupted on Tuesday with agitators fighting pitched battles with police, prompting it to open fire.

Of the almost 100 people injured, the condition of two was said to be critical in hospital.

Fresh police firing took place in Anna Nagar, a locality in Tuticorin (also known as Thoothukudi), as public ire showed little sign of abating.

Most of the injured are civilians but 36 policemen also suffered injuries of various kinds in mob fury, official sources said.

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Normal life in Thoothukudi was virtually crippled on Wednesday, with most people staying indoors as the district administration announced that prohibitory orders banning the assembly of five or more people that were imposed on Monday evening would remain in force till May 25.

The prohibitory orders were extended in Thoothukudi district's Arumugamangalam, Vembar, Kulathur, Ottapidaram, Vedanatham, and Eppodum Vendran, said District Collector N Venkatesh. Tamil Nadu, is a brutal example of state-sponsored terrorism.

Blaming provocative messages spread through social media, the government in an order said such messages led to a massive gathering of about 20,000 people yesterday in Tuticorin against Sterlite's copper plant which subsequently resulted in violence and police action. Police and paramilitary personnel were deployed all over the town in large numbers.

Protesters set vehicles on fire and threw stones at police, Palaniswami said in a statement. As people marched ahead, breaching the barricades, and entered the Collectorate, the police retaliated and fired at the crowds.

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