Jallikattu row: Tamil Nadu shuts down in protests as government mulls a way out
Chennai, Jan 20: Most of Tamil Nadu is expected to remain shut on Friday as a mark of solidarity with the pro-Jallikattu protesters. However, no organisation has called for a formal bandh in the state in this regard. Almost all schools and colleges have declared a holiday till Sunday given the situation in the state.
Shops and establishments' associations in various parts of Chennai and across the state have decided to down their shutters as a mark of protest against the ban on Jallikattu.
People protesting at Marina Beach have been cautious to not allow any politician to either take credit or even take part in the protests. While the people's movement continues at Marina Beach, the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam has called for a statewide rail roko protest on Friday.
DMK chief MK Stalin asked party cadres across the state to block railway tracks in protest agaisnt the state and central governments' inability and 'unwillingness' to understand the sentiments of the Tamil people.
According to latest reports, direct train services between Trichy and Madurai have been stopped and trains are running in an alternate route through Trichy - Pudukottai- Virdhunagar.
A rail roko protest by the DMK cadre in Mambalam Railway station in Chennai turned ugly as protesters breached police barricades. Mambalam railway station had been barricaded by the police to stop protesters from bringing train services to a halt. Cadres of the DMK broke through the barricades and entered the railway station. Senior leaders of the DMK including M K Stalin were present at the protest venue.
Meanwhile, the people's protest at Marina breach went on peacefully even as crowds continue to increase. The difference between protest by people and by political parties became evident during Friday's protests in Tamil Nadu.
Even schools and colleges in seven districts of TN have declared holiday. All factories and manufacturing units in Tiruppur have decided to remain shut on Friday. Cinema halls will also be closed and petrol bunks at various places will not provide services as a mark of protest.
While many celebrities have joined in the chorus for Jallikattu, AR Rahman announced that he will fast in support of Jallikattu and the protests across the state for it on Friday.
The maestro took to his social networking pages to declare his support to the sport.
Even as one of the biggest people's movements in Tamil Nadu is underway, O Panneerselvam's cabinet is all set to bring in a move to counter the ban on Jallikattu.
Hours after his meeting with the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, urging him to promulgate an ordinance, the TN Chief Minister, sources indicated, had come up with a solution to the impasse which is expected to be discussed with the cabinet before going public.
Thursday evening saw marathon meetings in the government circles of Tamil Nadu. An official announcement is expected to be made on Friday or Saturday.