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Police denies villagers permission for rally

By our correspondent.

Deccan Chronicle,
10 September, 2005

CHENNAI. Sept. 9: Villagers and activists, who were planning to walk from Mettur to Cuddalore in protest against Sanmar Chemplast's proposed poly-vinyl chloride factory in Cuddalore, allege that the Salem police denied permission for the rally on the company's directions.

They are filing a contempt of court petition in the High Court on Saturday, on the grounds that the Salem police has violated the court's order, which had granted them permission for the rally, by revoking the permission.

Speaking to reporters in the city on Friday, Mr. Nityanand Jayaraman, researcher and activist, said that two days before the rally was to begin on September 3, the Mettur police denied permission for the march. The organisers said that they had moved the Madras High Court and secured their right to walk through Salem city, where they had already obtained permission. The police revoked the permission for the walk, which was rescheduled to begin from Salem on September 5, saying that the Madras High Court had banned the walk considering it anti-labour. The activists are now determined to take the issue to court, by filing a petition against the Salem police.

The activists, along with the villagers of Mettur were planning a 285 km walk from Mettur to Cuddalore to campaign against Chemplast's proposed factory in the State Industries Promotion Corporation of Tamilnadu in Cuddalore.

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