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Self-immolation attempt foiled

Special Correspondent

Court boycott total in Chennai

CHENNAI: : An advocate's coat caught fire during a protest against the latest amendments to the Code of Criminal Procedure near the Metropolitan Magistrate Court at Egmore here on Thursday. It is alleged that the advocate tried to commit self-immolation.

A group of advocates belonging to the Egmore Bar Association came to the road on Thursday morning as part of their agitation.

Eyewitnesses said all of a sudden, the 27-year-old Balakrishnan "caught fire" and started screaming for help.

Though people around him were able to put out the fire in a few minutes, he sustained 20 per cent burns in the hands and legs. He was rushed to the Kilpauk Medical College Hospital.

In the Madras High Court, the boycott by advocates was total for the second day on Thursday.

"Denial of rights"

The Communist Party of India urged the Governments of Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry to bring in legislation for exemption from the Act.

In a statement, State secretary Tha. Pandian said the amendments were aimed at denying the citizens their basic rights and conferring unlimited powers on the police.

He took exception to the provisions relating to the arrest of women between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m., with the permission of a magistrate, and the anticipatory bail requirements.

His party supported the advocates' agitation.

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