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Bid on Stalin's life in Madurai

Tamil Nadu Bureau

CRPF guard who tried to intercept the armed intruder gets stabbed



M. K. Stalin.

MADURAI: In what was meant to be an attempt on the life of Local Administration Minister M.K Stalin, an armed intruder, who got within his close range, ended up attacking a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) guard at the railway station here on Tuesday morning.

Despite the presence of security personnel and a large number of cadres, the suspect made good his escape. Security has been enhanced for Mr. Stalin, DMK deputy general secretary and son of Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi.

Though the incident took place around 6.30 a.m. a complaint was lodged only three hours later. The Railway Police registered a case under Section 307 (attempt to murder) against an "unidentified" person. A blood-stained knife was recovered.

According to police sources, the CRPF head constable, Suresh Kumar Pandey, saw the suspect rushing towards Mr. Stalin with a knife on the main platform. When he tried to intercept him, the suspect stabbed him, causing minor cut injuries. It is not clear why the CRPF guard did not raise an alarm or inform the Railway Police about the alleged attack on the spot. The VIP was also not immediately aware of the incident.

After undergoing treatment, Mr. Pandey preferred a complaint.

The injured head constable told investigators that he did try to draw the attention of the local police who were in the vicinity. Amid drumbeats, they either did not hear him or understand his language (Hindi).

"Going by the preliminary information, an attempt was made to murder Mr. Stalin. The suspect was aged around 50 years and was wearing a white shirt. CRPF personnel were escorting the Minister from Chennai. We are assisting the Railway Police in tracking down the culprit," the Deputy Commissioner of Police (Law and Order), S. Rajendran, told The Hindu .

Later, talking to newsmen, Mr. Stalin said that only the Central Reserve Police Force personnel protected him from the alleged attempt.

He said the intruder pulled his shirt from behind, when he was accorded a reception by partymen at the station. "I took him for an overenthusiastic party cadre. Only after arriving at the Circuit House, did I come to know about the incident. I am not worried about my life. After having chosen public life, it should not bother me," he said.

`Z' category security

Mr. Stalin will be provided `Z' category security, a senior police officer in Chennai said. He was hitherto in the `Y' category. His security will include two personal security officers round the clock, a uniformed guard carrying automatic weapon, armed escort and armed guard at his residence.

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