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Jaya begins fast over Cauvery issue
March 18, 2007 14:34 IST
All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam chief Jayalalithaa went on a one-day token fast on Sunday, demanding notification of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal's final award in the Central gazette. There was chaos and unruly scenes around the venue.
The former Tamil Nadu chief minister commenced the fast on Sunday morning on a specially erected dias in front of the Valluvar Kottam, a memorial for Tamil saint-poet Tiruvalluvar in the heart of Chennai.
Several senior party leaders, including former ministers O Panneerselvam and E Madhusudanan, joined her on the stage.
This is the second time Jayalalithaa is resorting to a fast on the Cauvery issue, the previous occasion being in 1992 when she was the chief minister in her first tenure.
She had then went on fast for four days, demanding setting up of a monitoring commitee to oversee the implementation of the tribunal's interim award.
There were no arrangements to control party cadres, especially women, who were surging forward towards the dais to have a glimpse of their leader.
Except for the barricades near the dais, the poorly arranged show left everyone jostling and pushing for space.
The police failed to anticipate the situation and were content with guarding roads and making traffic arrangements.
Not a single police personnel was seen at the venue. Journalists had a tough time getting to the small area earmarked for them since there were no entry or exit points to it and they had to wade through the crowd.