Amidst the outrage due to the violence in anti-Sterlite protest in Tuticorin, a video has emerged showing the inhuman reaction of the police as a young man lay dying on the ground.
In the video, 22-year-old Kaliappan can be seen lying on the ground with policemen surrounding him. As he moves his head a little, one of the policemen prods him with a stick and says, “Stop acting”.
— Anna Isaac (@anna_isaac) May 23, 2018
Kaliappan was one of the hundreds of protesters against a Sterlite plant at Tamil Nadu’s Tuticorin. He was declared dead, of his gunshot wounds soon after, when he was brought to the government hospital in Thoothukudi, reported Deccan Chronicle.
Following Kaliappan’s death, the toll in the unfortunate and avoidable tragedy has risen to 13.
On Wednesday, the Tamil Nadu government ordered suspension of internet services in Tuticorin and adjoining districts of Tirunelveli and Kanyakumari for five days to prevent spread of ‘rumours’ through social media and help bring public ‘tranquility’.
The government also transferred district collector N Venkatesh and Superintendent of Police P Mahendran on Wednesday.
Tirunelveli District collector, Sandeep Nanduri has been appointed as the new Tuticorin district collector, an official release said.
Nilgiris District SP Murali Rambha will replace P Mahendran.
The new collector Nanduri said that the immediate priority was to restore normalcy in Thoothukudi. He assured that a judicial inquiry would go into every aspect of what happened during the firing, including who ordered the shooting, quoted Deccan Herald.
Nanduri is planning to visit the government hospital and ensure that all patients get basic amenities.
Asked whether CRPF is being called in, Nanduri said no such decision has been taken but the situation is still tense. He expects the situation to calm down in two to three days
A video released by news agency ANI on Wednesday taking aim from the top of a bus and then a voice from the background makes a shocking statement: “At least one should die”.
#WATCH Local police in Tuticorin seen with assault rifles to disperse protesters demanding a ban on Sterlite Industries. 9 protestors have lost their lives. #TamilNadu. (Earlier visuals) pic.twitter.com/hinYmbtIZQ
— ANI (@ANI) May 22, 2018
The killings of protestors have evoked a sharp response from the opposition with MDMK chief Vaiko likening it to Jallianwala Bagh massacre.
The district police on Thursday filed cases against a host of political leaders, including MK Stalin, MDMK chief Vaiko, Tamil Maanila Congress president G K Vasan and actor Kamal Haasan, for defying prohibitory orders while visiting the port city on Wednesday.
These leaders were in Thoothukudi on Wednesday to meet the injured at the government hospital as well as families of those killed in Tuesday’s firing.
The protesters are demanding that Sterlite’s copper smelting plant be shut down as it is polluting the air and water of the region.