Two Immolation Bids Keep Cops on Their Toes
By J Shanmugha Sundaram | Published: 26th August 2014 06:00 AM |
VELLORE: Officials posted at Vellore collectorate had a busy day on Tuesday. A fifty-year-old ex-serviceman created flutter by attempting to set himself afire on the premises during the Monday Grievance Day meet. Within a few minutes, another man tried to do the same.
The revenue and police department officials thwarted the two men’s attempt by acting swiftly, but such events raised questions over the response of authorities towards the petitioners’ pleas.
M Sekar of Vaduganthangal village shouted slogans ‘Bharath Mathaki Jai’ and poured a cane of kerosene over him near the Quaid-E-Milleth Grievance Meeting Hall inside the Collectorate. Alert police personnel immediately rushed towards him and overpowered him before he set himself on fire. The incident took place around 12 noon. He was immediately taken to Collector R Nanthagopal.
On hearing the plea of Sekar, who retired from defence in January 2012, the Collector asked him to meet the DSP of the respective sub-division. “I served for 30 years in the army guarding the borders of the country, but now I am not able to protect my house and family. When I retired I was a proud man, but now I am ashamed of myself as I cannot fight a former councillor,“said the visibly upset Sekar.
I was forced to take the extreme step as the officials had failed to take action despite a number of complaints and petitions against the former councillor. “I have already met the DSP several times but in vain,” said Sekar. Sekar and his family have been living in Vaduganthal village for several years. But the last four years had been a nightmare for them. He claimed that Muthunatarajan, the former DMK councillor, bought a land next to his house four years ago. On learning that Sekar had constructed his house in the government porombokku land, he had been threatening him to vacant from the land to occupy it.
Muthunatarajan and his relatives Vijayan, Dinakaran, Ravi and their supporters reportedly assaulted Sekar and his wife Sumathi (35) on several occasions. “Since May 2011, I have submitted 16 petitions to CM Cell, SP office and district administration. But, no action had been taken. He continued to threaten us,” said Sekar, who was arrested and remanded on charges of attempt to suicide.
“We planned to construct a house in our land. On Friday, Muthunatarajan and his relatives came to our house and threatened us to vacate it. My husband filed a case against him, but he again came during the late hours of the day and assaulted me and my husband,” Sumathi alleged. She added, “Fearing for our lives, we ran from our house last Friday. I don’t know what the police are doing. If this is happening to an ex-serviceman, what about a common man.” She said, Muthunatarajan assaulted her with a slipper a year ago when she tried to protect her husband. A case was filed in K V Kuppam station.
The second person was 43-year-old S Nisar of VOC Nagar in Sathuvachari who tried to sneak into the Collectorate with kerosene on Monday. But he was caught even before he could enter the collectorate.
He told the officials that his wife was wrongly operated in a private hospital in Sathuvachari. He borrowed nearly `2 lakh for interest to save her. Now, he has been facing huge debt and literally frustrated over this, he took the issue to the knowlewdge of the officials. He was handed over to the police, who in turn, filed a case on charges of attempt to suicide. He was apprehended.