Coimbatore: Life came to a standstill in Coimbatore with buses off the roads, shops, schools and some petrol pumps shut following the conviction of AIADMK chief Jayalalithaa by a special court in Bengaluru.
Thousands of AIADMK members staged protests in various places of Coimbatore and Tirupur. The city and peripheral areas wore a deserted look with closed shops and empty streets by 4 pm, even before the court pronounced the quantum of sentence.
Hundreds of AIADMK cadres staged road rokos in Coimbatore and burnt the effigies of DMK president M, Karunanidhi and DMK general secretary K. Anbazhagan on Avinashi Road, Mettupalayam road, Pollachi and Karumbukkadai.
A self-immolation bid was also reported from Palladam in neighbouring Tirupur district. There were reports of AIADMK cadre forcing shopkeepers to down shutters across the city and the rural areas.
As news of the verdict started to trickle in, hundreds of AIADMK supporters marched from Idhaya Deivam Maaligai, the party office, and blocked traffic on Avinashi Road, raising slogans against the DMK and Karunanidhi.
After blocking the road, two party members attempted to set themselves on fire. However, they were rescued by the city police. The police diverted traffic off Avinashi road and Trichy road.
Around 3 pm, the DMK party office on Cross Cut Road in Coimbatore was closed. Educational institutions, commercial establishments, cinema theatres, Brooke Field mall, Fun mall, hotels and bakers on Nanjappa road and even some petrol pumps and pharmacies were closed. Several cultural events and programmes were cancelled in the city.
Tasmac shops were also closed in the entire Coimbatore district following instructions from the police. On Saturday evening, Coimbatore came to a standstill and most working men and women were stranded at bus stops with most buses off the roads.
AIADMK members also staged a protest in front of Coimbatore railway junction and attempted to block an express train. However, they were prevented by railway police from entering the railway station, said the police....
Location: Tamil Nadu