[ Thursday, 20 September 2012, 12:04.59 PM GMT +05:30 ]
MDMK general secretary A M K Vaiko and hundreds of his supporters in a convoy were stopped on Wednesday, minutes after they entered Bad Chicholi area of Pandhurna tehsil of this district in Madhya Pradesh (MP) with a mission to show black flags to Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajpaksa, who is slated to grace an international function at Sanchi on September 21 in Raisen district of the state.
After being stopped, Vaiko, with his 700-odd supporters, squatted on the road saying that it was unjust to stop him in a democratic country. As soon as he entered MP, he was welcomed with a bouquet of flowers by district collector Mahesh Chand Choudhary on behalf of CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
Choudhary told that the group would be camping across the border in Savner town of Maharashtra for the night. He added that the situation was peaceful and did not warrant any action against the group so far.
"Vaiko, along with his supporters, has been stopped at Bad Chicholi around 4.10pm. We are holding talks with him for an amicable solution," Jabalpur police range inspector general of police V Madhukumar said.
He said prohibitory order under section 144 of CrPC had been clamped in Bad Chicholi. "We haven't arrested him yet. There is a lakshman rekha (border) and if he crosses it, we are going to act by the book," the IGP said.
"I have already informed Chouhan about our peaceful protest and sentiments of the Tamil people," Vaiko told reporters. "MP chief minister is welcoming me with flowers but not allowing me to move from here.
This is ridiculous. I have all the right to protest in a peaceful manner at Sanchi," he rued.
He said they were going to lodge peaceful protest in a democratic way. He said that the voice of oppressed Tamil people cannot be stifled in an undemocratic way. Vaiko had left Tamil Nadu two days ago and reached Nagpur in the morning from where he entered Madhya Pradesh.
Vaiko's convoy includes around 26 four-wheelers.
Vaiko is the founder of MDMK, a political outfit that fosters the cause of Tamil nationalism.
He is known for his support to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), an organisation that has been banned as a terrorist outfit in more than 30 countries, including India. MDMK founder had been charged and arrested under the Prevention of Terrorist Activities Act (POTA) in 2002 and for sedition in October 2008, according to reports.
Meanwhile, Pandhurna is appearing like a garrison even as Vaiko and his supporters were squatting on the road in Bad Chicholi till the report was filed.
Meanwhile, heavy police force has been deployed in and around chief minister Chouhan's official residence in Bhopal. Policemen in plain clothes were posted around the house looking for the protesters after getting some inputs that some of them might have reached the state capital.
Similarly, police are keeping a hawk's eye in Raisen district close to Bhopal, where Rajapaksa is scheduled to lay the foundation of stone of a Buddhist centre in Sanchi on Friday.
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