27 Left municipal councillors arrested in Kochi

Kochi, Sep 18 (IANS) Kochi Municipal Corporation Mayor Tomy Chammani was on Friday held captive for around 10 hours by 27 Left party councillors. The siege ended on Friday night, with the arrest of the protesters.

Trouble started on Friday morning when the council began its sitting.

The Left councillors started shouting slogans and demanding a judicial probe into last month’s boat accident at Fort Kochi that left 11 people dead.

While the Congress party’s mayor was rounded up by the agitated Left councillors inside the council chamber, Left Front cadres outside also staged a sit-in, giving support to their councillors.

The issue came up before Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, and he said the next cabinet meeting will take up the matter.

Even after his assurance, the protesters did not relent.

It was only after 9 p.m. when police arrested the councillors and forcefully took them to waiting police vehicles that the seige ended and the mayor was freed.

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