Nedumaran continues fast; leaders urge him to give up

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Chennai, Sep 13 (UNI) Tamil Nationalist Movement (TNM) leader P Nedumaran, a staunch supporter of Eelam Tamils who made a vain bid to carry relief material to the suffering Sri Lankan Tamils yesterday, continued his indefinite fast here today, even as leaders of various parties, espousing the cause of ethnic Tamils, appealed to him to give up the fast.

Mr Nedumaran, who was earlier detained under the now defunct POTA for his support to the banned LTTE, began his fast at Nagapattinam yesterday after police foiled his bid to set sail to Sri Lanka in a boat with medicines and food for the Tamils by arresting him along with 150 of his supporters.

He arrived here this morning after his release last evening and continued his fast at a private place in Koyambedu in the city, sources close to the TNM leader told UNI.

''I am continuing my fast at a private place. Even if police arrest me and put me in jail, the agitation will continue till permission is granted to take medicines and food to the Tamils in the island nation,'' he said.

Pledging unflinching support to the aged Nedumaran, the leaders, including PMK founder-leader S Ramadoss, MDMK General Secretary Vaiko, Dalit Panthers of India leader Thol Thirumavalavan, urged him to give up the agitation.

Mr Vaiko, Mr Thirumavalavan and PMK President G K Mani called on Mr Nedumaran at the fast venue.

In a statement here, Dr Ramadoss appealed to Mr Nedumaran to end his fast as it was ''not the right approach to fight for the cause''.

Mr Nedumaran was fully justified in demanding that the Red Cross ensure the relief materials collected by him, reached the suffering Tamils in the island, he said. ''But launching a fast-unto-death to press this demand was not the right approach,'' he added.

Mr Vaiko enquired about the health condition of Mr Nedumaran and shared the concerns of the sufferings of Eelam Tamils, MDMK sources told UNI

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