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DMK MP held for assaulting Dalit, 7 others

Special Correspondent



J.K. Ritheesh

RAMANATHAPURAM: DMK Member of Parliament J.K. Ritheesh and seven others were arrested for allegedly assaulting and abusing a Dalit and others when a clash broke out on Monday night between his supporters and a group over an issue of relaying a road.

Ramanathapuram Superintendent of Police Anil Kumar Giri told The Hindu that according to a complaint given by M. Arumugam of Andichiyendal, Mr. Ritheesh and a group of DMK partymen attacked Narayanan (40) of Andichiyendal village when he was standing at Sholandur near here. They also allegedly hurled stones at a group of villagers, who were standing nearby.

Narayanan sustained injuries on his mouth and nose. Mr. Ritheesh and others sped away from the scene in their vehicles.

Mr. Ritheesh and others had been charged under Section 3 (i) (X) of Scheduled Class and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and Sections 147 (rioting), 294 (b) (using obscene words in a public place), 323 (causing simple hurt) and 506 (ii) (criminal intimidation) of Indian Penal Code. They were remanded in judicial custody. Two vehicles have also been seized.

The problem arose, according to the villagers of Sholandur and Peechankurichi, when a group of AIADMK men opposed the relaying of a road at Peechankurichi junction, which they claimed was against the model code of conduct. It resulted in a heated argument between the local DMK and AIADMK supporters. However, they disappeared following a compromise worked out by elders and police.

But the problem resumed when a group of DMK members and the MP, who were going for the campaign of party candidate for the Thiruvadanai constituency and Minister for Slum Clearance S. Thangavelan, created a ruckus at Sholandur for stopping the road work.

Following the incident, the AIADMK men and people of Sholandur blocked traffic on NH 210, demanding the arrest all of those involved in the skirmishes at Sholandur.

A. Amalraj, Deputy Inspector General of Police, said efforts were being taken to arrest some more persons in connection with the incident. Security had been tightened in and around the troubled areas.

A case was also registered against Murugan and the earthmover used for road work at Peechankurichi was seized.

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