Stalin meets slain BSP leader’s wife, assures justice | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Stalin meets slain BSP leader’s wife, assures justice

By, Chennai/new Delhi
Jul 10, 2024 07:44 AM IST

11 suspects have been arrested in connection with Armstrong’s murder, with the Chennai police suspecting the involvement of associates of gangster Arcot Suresh, who was murdered in August last year

Tamil Nadu chief minister MK Stalin on Tuesday visited the family of slain Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) state chief K Armstrong and assured of bringing perpetrators to justice, even as opposition parties intensified their attack on the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) government over the law-and-order situation, alleging that atrocities against Dalits have risen in the southern state under the current regime.

Tamil Nadu chief minister MK Stalin meets the wife of deceased Bahujan Samaj Party state president K Armstrong, on Tuesday. K Armstrong was hacked to death by a group of men near his residence in Perambur on July 5 (MK Stalin - X)
Tamil Nadu chief minister MK Stalin meets the wife of deceased Bahujan Samaj Party state president K Armstrong, on Tuesday. K Armstrong was hacked to death by a group of men near his residence in Perambur on July 5 (MK Stalin - X)

Stalin met the wife and other family members of Armstrong, who was hacked to death by a group of unidentified men near his residence at Perambur in Chennai on July 5. The chief minister expressed his condolences to Armstrong’s widow, K Porkudi, and also paid floral tributes to the slain Dalit leader.

“I assured Sister Porkudi (wife of Armstrong) that murderers would be brought before the law for severe punishment. Our government is determined to find and punish whoever is behind the murder,” Stalin wrote in Tamil on X, sharing a photo of his visit to Armstrong’s house.

Stalin’s visit came a day after his government transferred the Chennai police commissioner in the aftermath of the brutal killing of the BSP state chief.

“The chief minister assured that a thorough probe will be conducted in the case and all those involved in the heinous act would be arrested and brought to justice,” the DMK government said in a statement.

Later in the day, Stalin held a high-level review meeting on law and order at the secretariat. Chief secretary Shiv Das Meena, home secretary P Amutha, director general of police (DGP) Shankar Jiwal, Chennai police commissioner A Arun, and ADGP (law and order) Davidson Devasirvatham among others attended the meeting.

So far, 11 suspects have been arrested in connection with Armstrong’s murder, with the Chennai police suspecting the involvement of associates of gangster Arcot Suresh, who was murdered in August last year.

Following the incident, opposition parties have been attacking the DMK government over deteriorating law and order in the state. “No one in Tamil Nadu is safe under the DMK rule,” leader of opposition in the assembly and AIADMK general secretary Edappadi Palaniswami alleged on Tuesday. “There is no use urging the chief minister… so I request police officers to maintain law and order as their service to people.”

In Delhi, BJP leader and Union minister L Murugan on Tuesday alleged that large-scale atrocities were taking place against the Scheduled Castes (SC) in Tamil Nadu, adding that even political leaders were not safe under the DMK regime.

“After the DMK came to power in May 2021, there has been a tremendous increase in the atrocities against Dalits in Tamil Nadu. A survey is telling that every year over 2,000 cases of atrocities against Dalits are filed in the state,” the MoS information and broadcasting told reporters at the BJP headquarters in New Delhi. Murugan, who was accompanied by BJP state vice-president VP Duraisamy, however, did not specify which survey he was citing.

Later, a delegation of the Tamil Nadu BJP unit, led by Duraisamy, approached the National Commission for Scheduled Castes and the National Human Rights Commission for “appropriate action” in the case.

Referring to a series of incidents of alleged atrocities against Dalits since 2022 and some attacks and murders of BJP leaders in the state, Murugan blamed Stalin for “failing” to secure law and order in the state. “Recently, K Armstrong, a Dalit leader and BSP state president was murdered...even political leaders are not safe in the state under the DMK rule,” the minister alleged. “Scheduled caste leaders and people have no security and are facing harassment.”

The BJP leader also cited a survey conducted by the Tamil Nadu Untouchability Eradication Front, an organisation linked to the Communist Party of India (Marxist), which claimed that in 22 villages, panchayat presidents were denied chairs and obstructed from carrying out their duties due to caste discrimination.

“Stalin doesn’t have the moral right to talk about social justice because of the incidents of atrocities against Dalits taking place in the state,” he charged.

Murugan also took on the Congress, questioning its silence over the recent hooch tragedy which claimed several lives in Tamil Nadu. “Nearly 70 people died in that incident in Kallakurichi. Over 40 of them belonged to Scheduled Caste. Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge and party leader Rahul Gandhi didn’t go there,” he charged.

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