Thursday, Jul 11, 2002
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By S. Vijay Kumar
According to police sources, Mr. Vaiko would be arrested and brought to a Tirumangalam court here by road tomorrow around 11 p.m.
On remand to judicial custody, he will be lodged at the Madurai central prison. Soon after Mr. Vaiko is taken into custody, the Lok Sabha Speaker would be informed.
Elaborate security arrangements have been made in the southern districts. While preventive arrests started this evening, police ensured tight security at the Tirumangalam taluk police station and the court premises.
"We have alerted all the SPs in the south zone to enhance bandobust in sensitive pockets where the party (MDMK) has a strong presence.
Two companies of the Tamil Nadu Special Police will be deployed in Virudhunagar district (where the Sivakasi Lok Sabha constituency is located) as a precautionary measure," the Inspector-General (South Zone), T. Rajendran, told The Hindu.
The first MP to face arrest under POTA, Mr. Vaiko has been accused of making a pro-LTTE speech at a meeting at Tirumangalam on June 29. Since certain portions of his speech were found to "endanger the nation's security and integrity", police registered cases against Mr. Vaiko and eight others under various sections of POTA, the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 and the IPC.
Police made frantic efforts to secure non-bailable warrants immediately after the cases were registered but since the regular judicial magistrate, S. Venkatachalapathi, was not available, the issue got deferred till Monday.
Shortly after issuing an NBW against Mr. Vaiko on Tuesday, the magistrate is said to have proceeded on leave.
Meanwhile, police have initiated steps for the formation of a special court in Madurai to pursue the proceedings under POTA.
Our Chennai Special
The Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, Jayalalithaa, held discussions with the Chief Secretary, Sukavaneshwar, the Home Secretary, Naresh Gupta, and the Director-General of Police, B.P. Nailwal, on the situation arising out of the decision to arrest Mr. Vaiko.
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