Chennai police commissioner S George has assured a probe into allegations that some of his colleagues resorted to rioting and set fire to vehicles during to crackdown on protesters demanding the lifting of a ban on bull-taming sport Jallikattu.
George said on Monday that some miscreants blended with the youth protesting on Marina Beach in Chennai and that the action by personnel was targeted against them.
“We could see some anti-social elements enter through the sea route to foment trouble on Marina Beach,” he told a media briefing late on Monday evening.
Tamil Nadu approved a proposed law to allow Jallikattu on Monday, hoping to end week-long protests in support of a sport banned by the Supreme Court on grounds of animal cruelty.
Hours before, police lobbed tear gas and clashed with stone-throwing protesters, who turned violent after the personnel began the eviction drive from the iconic Chennai seafront that was the epicentre of the unrest for six days.
Later, videos emerged purportedly showing police caught in acts of violence and setting an auto-rickshaw afire.
MK Stalin, working president of the opposition DMK party, met governor Vidyasagar Rao on Monday and sought a judicial probe by a sitting high court judge into the alleged police high-handedness.
But George said at the media briefing that “minimum force was used to evict the protesters”.
“Sporadic protests were happening in different parts of Tamil Nadu and we are controlling them,” the official said, adding some 40 people were held in Chennai.
PMK leader Anbumani Ramadoss told a private television channel on Tuesday that he was also aware of three more videos purportedly showing police indulging in violence. He sought a CBI probe into the incident.