The Tuticorin story is far from over lives and jobs are at stake, as is the reputation of Tamil Nadu's plethora of political parties. Tuticorin is not only busy port city but a important commercial city in Tamilnadu.
Violent protests have rocked this medium-sized port city, which dots the southernmost stretch of the state's coastline, and 14 people have been killed in police firing.
The protesters' demand was fairly simple Don't expand the Sterlite Copper plant (A Vedanta-owned copper smelting unit which locals say pollutes groundwater), and shut it down.
The scope of the tragedy has earned Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami's administration (and the Centre) severe censure. "#TNJallianwallahBagh", read a handwritten poster dispayed at a trade union's protest in Delhi. "A brutal example of state-sponsored terrorism," said Rahul Gandhi, when nine people were reported dead.
But Palaniswami has taken the side of the state police. In comments published by a leading news agency, the chief minister said they were defending themselves while under attack. He blamed "the entire episode" on "certain political parties, NGOs and anti-social elements", who he said had taken protesters on "a wrong path."
Citizens have a fundamental right to protest. The police neither have the right nor a duty to kill. In Tuticorin the State did that: killed 9/10 peaceful protesters. We watch in silence when citizens [are] silenced forever by the State. Desh badal chuka hai The country has changed tweeted Kapil Sibal, Congress leader.
The Union Ministry of Home Affairs, headed by Rajnath Singh, has asked the Tamil Nadu government for a detailed report on the events and circumstances leading to the loss of lives on May 22 as well as details on the Sterlite plant, and on the action taken to restore peace and normalcy.
In an interview with ANI, Singh said Prime Minister Narendra Modi is pained by the deaths, and expressed his own grief. As of Thursday morning, over 70 people were still undergoing treatment.
But till now Modi who accepted fitness challenge for cricketer Virat Kohli but failed to take cognisance of mass murder that been done using hifi using 7.62 sniper rifle.
Sniper rifle is a high-precision rifle designed for sniper missions. It serves to fulfil the tactical need for long range surveillance, effective anti-personnel and anti-materiel operations with high hit efficiency, and can be used by both military and law enforcement.
The modern sniper rifle is a portable shoulder-fired weapon system with a choice between bolt-action or semi-automatic action, fitted with a telescopes. 7.62×51mm M24 Sniper Weapon System is capable of 0.5 MOA accuracy to maximal effective range of about 800 meters. The M24 was the United States Army and is the Israel Defense Forces standard-issue sniper rifle.
On Wednesday, the Madurai bench of the Madras High Court stayed plans to double the Sterlite plant's capacity from four lakh tonnes to eight lakh tonnes.
The 3000 Billion GBP revenue making Vedanda giant's Sterlite Copper plant says it's currently on a "planned and extended" shutdown for several weeks to carry out repairs and maintenance activities. The jobs of thousands of 'indirect' employees - who do work associated with the plant, such as supply, logistics, and transport will remain suspended as long as the plant is shut.
What about allegations that its plant produces cancer-causing waste? Sterlite Copper's CEO says these are "unfounded rumours."
The pollution control board has declined to renew the license issued to Sterlite Copper to operate its plant, saying it failed to comply with environmental laws. The firm denied the charges and says it will appeal the board's order.
It is important to note Police shot dead 13 persons when it opened fire on a rally on Tuesday and one on wednesday, which marked the 100th day of peaceful demonstrations.
Tamil Nadu is one of India’s most prosperous and industrialised states but, as elsewhere in the country, environmental regulations are routinely breached and poorly policed.
Thoothukudi was also the site of violent protests in 2012 over a nuclear power plant in neighbouring Kudankulam district that left one person dead.
Mobile internet services were cut in the district and surrounding areas and early on Thursday morning the state’s pollution control board ordered the closure of the copper plant, cutting off its electricity supply.
The board claimed it had found evidence the plant was “carrying out activities to resume production” despite being ordered to wait until its license to operate was renewed.
Following 14 deaths the state Government has shifted District collector and SP and the new incumbent Sandeep Nanduri, collector has said he will bring normalcy and so far Over 65 people have been arrested for indulging in violence.
RSS hit out at Congress president Rahul Gandhi for his comments that Tamils were being killed for refusing to “bow” to the right-wing outfit. “A frustrated Congress party and its president Rahul Gandhi are trying to create more divisions in the society to regain their lost support,” said RSS national joint secretary Manmohan Vaidya.
Opposition leaders who visited victims in Tuticorin on Wednesday were booked for violating Section 144. It is also important to be noted RSS hindutva fringe groups carried out ratha yatra while 144 where in force in Tamilnadu.
DMK Working President MK Stalin, Makkal Needhi Maiam chief actor turned politician Kamal Haasan, and Congress leader Thirunavukkarasar ,MDMK leader vaiko were among them.
Today, Stalin was detained in Chennai while he protested outside the Tamil Nadu secretariat condemning Tuticorin massacre and demanding resignation of CM Edapadai Palanisamy and Police chief DGP Rajendran.
The DMK and opposition parties have called for a dawn-to-dusk bandh on Friday to protest the violence. And congress from delhi has said to send all party team to investigate the killings.
The high court also turned down State ADMK government plea and asked to keep bodies in mortuary and give post mortem report by 30th May 2018.