Residents of Athipakkam and Empalam Colony resorted to road-rokko at two places on Sunday, demanding the immediate arrest of miscreants who had assaulted and injured two Dalit youth on Saturday near Sempur in Vandavasi taluk. Traffic on the Vandavasi-Theyyar Road was affected for several hours.
Sensing the hostility, the district police deployed nearly 300 personnel, including six deputy superintendents of police (DSPs) and 12 inspectors at various spots.
SP of Tiruvannamalai, J Mutharasi also camped at Vandavasi to oversee the security arrangements, while the police teams were deployed at Sempur and Empalam villages. Riot control vehicle ‘Vajra’ was also stationed at Athipakkam as a precautionary measure.
The unrest started when an unidentified group stopped Silambarasan (26) and Karthick (26) of Athipakkam, who were riding a motorbike on the outskirts of Sempur on Saturday night, and attacked them, leaving them injured. They were taken toVandavasi Government Hospital. The duo claimed that attackers were residents of Sempur, however, caste Hindus of Sempur denied the allegation.
On Saturday night, a group of Dalits resorted to a protest in front of the Fort in Vandavasi and later laid siege to the Vandavasi police station. However, they withdrew the protest after police assured them of suitable action.
On Sunday morning, the residents of Athipakkam continued the protest and squatted on the road demanding the arrest of the attackers. Residents of Empalam Colony also staged a road rokko. Vandavasi North Police registered a case.