Tuesday, August 14, 2001, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

DMK MPs cause bedlam in Houses
Tribune News Service

A delegation led by DMK Chief M. Karunanidhi called on Tamil Nadu Governer
A delegation led by DMK chief M. Karunanidhi called on Tamil Nadu Governor C. Rangarajan at Raj Bhavan in Chennai on Monday over yesterday's violence at the party rally. — PTI photo

New Delhi, August 13
The issue of violence at the DMK’s rally in Chennai and the alleged police excesses on the demonstrators spilled over to Parliament today with both Houses being adjourned for the day.

Agitated DMK members, demanding the dismissal of the Jayalalitha government in Tamil Nadu, stormed the well of the two Houses waiving copies of newspaper reports and photographs of the rally.

The two Houses were initially adjourned but even on resumption the protests by the DMK members continued.

A DMK member, Mr V. Vetriselvan, who received injuries in yesterday’s rally removed his shirt in the Lok Sabha and showed injury marks reportedly sustained by him in the police action. He was one of the two Lok Sabha members injured during the incident.

AIADMK members tried to counter the agitated Opposition members from the state by strongly refuting the charges. They in turn maintained that it was the DMK workers who attacked the police. Both sides displayed newspapers containing the violence reports.

In the Rajya Sabha, the Prime Minister, Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee, who was in the House, could not give his scheduled reply to the debate on the Agra summit as Chairman Krishan Kant adjourned the proceedings till tomorrow when DMK members charged to the well of the House after it reassembled following an hour-long adjournment.

When the Lok Sabha reassembled at 2 p.m., the din continued with DMK members demonstrating in the well demanding “we want justice” and the AIADMK Government be sacked.

DMK members went up to the Speaker’s podium and made repeated attempts to disrupt the proceedings even as the Deputy Speaker P.M. Sayeed, who was in the Chair, tried to pacify them.

In the midst of pandemonium, papers were laid on the table.

Samata Party member Raghunath Jha also joined the DMK members in the well supporting their cause. Finding the members unrelenting, Mr Sayeed adjourned the House till tomorrow.


DMK rally: Jaya orders probe

Chennai, August 13
The Tamil Nadu Government today ordered a judicial probe into the violent incidents during the DMK’s protest rally here yesterday, which claimed five lives and left over 100 injured.

The probe would be conducted by retired Madras High Court Judge, Justice K.S. Bakthavatsalam, Chief Minister J. Jayalalitha told reporters here.

Ms Jayalalitha said the commission would enquire into the entire gamut of violence during the rally.

She also announced a solatium of Rs 50,000 each to the families of those killed, Rs 15,000 each to those injured and hospitalised and Rs 6,000 each to those who suffered simple injuries.

The Chief Minister described the attack and injury to mediapersons as “unfortunate” and blamed the DMK for the violence.

Asked whether she would meet the Governor to apprise him of the situation, she said the Chief Secretary would send a detailed report to the Governor.

She said it was the usual practice for the DMK party to indulge in violence during rallies taken out by it. “Similarly, violence had been let loose by the DMK during yesterday’s rally,” she alleged.

“The DMK President M. Karunanidhi had instigated violence because of the anger that the people of the state had not given him another chance to govern”, she said.

Ms Jayalalitha said: “The police did not loose its ‘balance’ when the processionists used abusive and filthy language against her and the police chief. The police maintained patience even when they indulged in stone pelting”.

When the violence reached its crescendo, police vehicles were torched and policemen attacked.

Stating that the DGP’s office near the Marina Beach looked like a ‘battle field’ last night, Ms Jayalalitha said a total of 102 policemen sustained injuries, including nine who received serious injuries. Public property worth nearly Rs 25 lakh had been damaged in the arson and violence.

Stating that no preventive arrests were made, she said if they were made some ‘professional’ anti-social elements would have been taken into custody and such incidents could have been avoided.

Referring to the injuries sustained by journalists, she said she had briefed the police on what sort of protection should be given to them during such incidents.

Meanwhile the DMK chief, Mr M. Karunanidhi, on Monday said that Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee had given a positive response to his demand for a probe by a Supreme Court judge into the ‘police atrocities’ in Tamil Nadu since his arrest on June 30. PTI, UNI

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