Theni (TN),Dec 21 : MDMK leader Vaiko was arrested near here today when he was on his way to take part in a protest to block roads leading to Kerala against its stand on the Mullaperiyar Dam over which it is locked in a bitter dispute with Tamil Nadu.
Vaiko was arrested along with two others including Tamilar Desia Iyakkam leader Pala Nedumaran when they were en route to the lower camp on the border of Uthamapalayam defying prohibitory orders.
Prohibitory orders are in force due to tense situation in the wake of the row between Tamil Nadu and Kerala on the 116-year-old dam which has escalated in recent days. Kerala wants demolition of the dam citing safety concerns while Tamil Nadu is opposed to it.
Police said they had made a request to Vaiko not to organise meetings and also informed about the prohibitory orders. However, as MDMK insisted on organising the protest, they were arrested.
About 10000 people blocked the road at Gudalur.Tension prevailed in Seelaiyampatti village as about 500 persons blocked the road and prevented police from taking Vaiko to the police station. Vaiko persuaded the people to disperse.
Vaiko alleged that the Central government was betraying the interests of Tamil Nadu and its people. Even after the Supreme court order on increasing the dam level to 142 feet, the Central and Kerala Governments did not implement it.
He said the dam had been strengthened by the Tamil Nadu government “100 times”.
Kerala government was keen to demolish the Mullaiperiyar Dam only to take the entire quantity of water to the Idukki dam and cultivate more paddy there, he alleged.