N Sathiya Moorthy in Chennai
Suspected pan-Tamil militants blasted a high-tension transmitter tower supplying power from the public sector Neyveli Lignite Corporation in northern Cuddalore district of Tamil Nadu to the neighbouring states of Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh.
The tower, in Thoppaiyankulam village in Villupuram district, was targeted on Tuesday night.
Following the blast, power supply to the 400-KV substation at Sriperumbudur for onward transmission to Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, was disrupted.
The supply, however, continues through feeder lines. NLC engineers are working on setting right the damaged transmission tower.
Witnesses told police that they saw three men leaving on a bike from the spot after the incident.
The police found a hand-written message from the spot, in the name of an organisation calling itself Tamil Nadu Cauvery Retrieval Force. The anti-terrorism Q-branch police of Tamil Nadu is investigating the case.
The message asked Karnataka to release Cauvery waters to Tamil Nadu, and urged the latter to deny electricity supply to Karnataka.
The NLC was at the centre of the controversial demonstration and agitation by the Tamil film industry, professing Tamil Nadu's case on the Cauvery water row only in recent weeks.
With Tuesday night's blast, and also the arrest of some Pattali Makkal Kacchi leaders for contempt of the Madras high court on Wednesday, security for the mahaa deepam festival at the Sri Arunachaleswar temple in neighbouring Thiruvanamalai on Wednesday evening has been tightened, the police said.
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