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Villagers held for vandalising outlet near Kotagiri

Agitated over the functioning of a newly opened TASMAC outlet that was not closed down despite assurances given by the authorities concerned, villagers of M Kaikaati village near Kotagiri vandalised the shop and reportedly damaged liquor bottles worth a few lakh rupees on Sunday morning. The police arrested and remanded 39 protesters, including 32 women, in judicial custody.

Villagers held for vandalising outlet near Kotagiri
Liquor bottles that were damaged at the TASMAC outlet at M Kaikaati near Kotagiri in The Nilgiris


Following the Supreme Court direction, the outlet functioning at Kattabettu Bazaar in Naduhatti Panchayat was closed down. Shop no. 8438 was relocated to M Kaikaati village on April 21. But villagers strongly opposed it from day one. They also staged a protest and picketed the shop thrice. 

Villagers said that following their opposition the authorities gave them an assurance to close the shop in 15 days. Meanwhile, customers who thronged the shop went up due to surge in number of tourists. On Sunday, exactly a month after the shop was opened the villagers, mostly women, turned furious as it caused them a lot of hindrance. 

Armed with crowbars and heavy stones, they broke open the lock of the shop and began to damage liquor bottles around 8 am.

Kotagiri police arrested 39 protesters for damaging government property. They were produced before the court and lodged in the Coimbatore Central Prison under judicial custody. Supervisor of the shop, Radhakrishnan claimed that bottles worth Rs 5 lakh were damaged. 

Outlet closed on Sanganoor Road 

In another incident at Ganapathypudur in the city, a TASMAC outlet that was closed down on the Sanganoor Road, as it was less than 200 metres from the Sathy Road (National Highway), but continued to function illegally was vandalised by Democratic Youth Federation of India members. They damaged a few cases of liquor bottles, besides purified water bottles and snacks.

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