Stalin hails huge success of shutdown in TN

| Updated: Apr 26, 2017 01:30 IST

Thiruvarur (Tamil Nadu) [India], Apr 25 (ANI): Hours after M.K. Stalin called for a one-day shutdown in Tamil Nadu for the drought-hit farmers, the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam's (DMK) working president has asserted that the shutdown was a huge success. "Today's shutdown was a huge success. We'll continue our efforts until farmers' demands are met," said Stalin. Earlier this day, Stalin along with his senior party colleagues were detained when they tried to block traffic during the one-day shutdown in Tamil Nadu. G. Ramakrishnan, Mutharasan, Thirumavalavan, and M. Subramanian were also detained by the Chennai Police. The DMK had called on the shutdown to show solidarity with the state's drought-struck farmers. The shutdown hit business in the state as several shops in Anna Nagar and Koyambedu market remained closed. The buses and autos, however, were moving as usual. Along with the DMK, the Congress, the Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi (VCK), the Communist Party of India (CPI), the Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPM) and the Manithaneya Makkal Katchi (MMK) also participated in the state-wide bandh. The film fraternity also expressed its support by cancelling shoots. Cinema halls were also closed for the day. Despite the opposition parties led by the DMK calling on to observe a state-wide shutdown, the E. Palanisamy-led state government, a day before, asserted that normalcy will not be affected. The police said it had taken all adequate steps, including proper deployment of personnel in order to maintain law and order in the state. Association of groceries, trade unions of auto drivers and local vegetable markets had also extended their support towards the bandh. The DMK had called for shutdown in order to urge the Central and state government to fulfil the farmers' demands including adequate relief and setting up of a Cauvery management board. However, the ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) termed the bandh call as being 'politically motivated'. The Tamil Nadu farmers earlier this week suspended their protest till May 25 after Chief Minister Palanisamy's assurance. "If our demands are not fulfilled we will start our protest again after 25th May. If we get train tickets, we will leave today," said Ayyakanu, an agitating farmer. Palanisamy has said that he discussed the farmers' issue in the NITI Aayog's Governing Council meeting and forwarded their demands to the Prime Minister. The farmers have been grabbing headlines for their unique and sometimes bizarre methods of protest since they arrived in Delhi over 38 days ago. Adorned with human skulls around their necks, the farmers attempted to grab the attention of authorities towards their condition and demands for drought relief package. The farmers have been demanding Centre's intervention to write off their loans from nationalised banks, a revised drought relief package and resolve the alleged drying up of the Tamil Nadu leg of the Kaveri river. The state government and the Madras High Court have already waived their loans from co-operative banks. (ANI)