Chennai: Former DMK Minister Veerapandi Arumugam and a party MLA were on Saturday arrested in land grabbing cases and their leader M K Stalin was detained during a stir, prompting DMK chief M Karunanidhi to accuse the Jayalalithaa Government of indulging in political vendetta.

Police arrested former minister Veerapandi Arumugam and a DMK MLA J Anbazhagan in two different land grabbing cases and detained Stalin, Karunanidhi's son, for staging a road rook near Tiruvarur, leading to sporadic protests across the state.

Arumugam was arrested in a landgrab case in Salem when heappeared before the police as per his bail conditions in two cases filed earlier. He was lodged in a Coimbatore prison.

Protesting his arrest, Arumugam's followers pelted stones at buses in Salem, injuring two drivers, police said.

Anbazhagan, party's legislator from Chepauk constituency in Chennai, was picked up by a team of Tirupur police a landgrab case filed in that district.

Stalin was held when he along with his aides allegedly squatted on the road after police sought to take into custody Tiruvarur District DMK Secretary Kalaivanan in connection with a case related to the death of a school student in a road mishap on Friday. Stalin was later let off, police said.

Jayalalithaa had blamed the DMK's school boycott call to press for implementation of the uniform education system for the death of the boy, alleging Kalaivanan instigated hispartymen to force the students, including the boy, to go out of the school.
The boy died when the bus in which he was returning home was involved in an accident.

DMK workers courted arrest at several places protesting against the detention of Stalin. Chennai Mayor M Subramaniam was among those taken into custody, police said.

Unfazed by the spate of arrests, Karunanidhi said in Chennai that the DMK would go ahead with its scheduled state-wide protest on August 1 against "foisting" of "false cases" against his partymen. "Jayalalithaa's vendetta and the police action are exceeding the limits," Karunanidhi said shortly after Stalin was detained when he visited Koradacheri village near Tiruvarur to condole the death of the boy.

Karunanidhi said the protest to condemn the police action against DMK men will go ahead "peacefully," as scheduled.
To a question, he said Jayalalithaa needed no reason to wreak vengeance (on DMK).

The DMK had called for the protest in the backdrop of a number of party functionaries coming under the police scanner over land grabbing charges.

Fulfilling one of its electoral promises, the ruling AIADMK has launched a crackdown on land grabbing during the previous DMK regime and set up special police cells across the state to deal with the complaints.

Stalin held for staging road roko

DMK President M Karunanidhi's son and party Treasurer M K Stalin was on Saturday detained by police for staging a road roko in neighbouring Tiruvarur district.

Police said Stalin, former Deputy Chief Minister, and some of his aides were picked up after they squatted on the road when the police wanted to question Tiruvarur DMK District Secretary Kalalichelvan in connection with a case.

Top district police officials said Stalin was likely to be "let-off" later.

Police said a case had been registered against Kalaichelvan for allegedly preventing students of a school in Koradacheri, about 30 km from Tiruvarur, from attending their classes on Friday as part of DMK's boycott call over uniform education system, now pending before Supreme Court.

As the students were returning home after being allegedly 'forced out' by the DMK men, a student died in a road accident involving the bus in which he was travelling.

Stalin came to Koradacheri on Saturday to express his condolences to the family of the boy and was accompanied by Kalaichelvan and DMK MP A K S Vijayan.

(Agencies)