Demand Justice for Thoothukudi

Locals say police are intimidating, harassing and arresting people involved in the anti-Sterlite protests in Thoothukudi.

Image credit: Alina Tiphagne

For 99 days, local communities in Thoothukudi, Tamil Nadu, were protesting to shut down the Sterlite copper plant over health and environmental concerns. 

On 22 May – the 100th day of the protest – the police used excessive force on largely peaceful protestors, opening fire at thousands who had gathered in Thoothukudi. 13 people were killed and hundreds injured. 

Civil society organizations estimate that scores of people including children have since been harassed, beaten and arrested by the police.

Six people have been arrested under the harsh National Security Act, which allows for detention for up to a year without charge or trial, denying detainees fair trial protections.

People in Thoothukudi say they are living in fear of being targeted. No investigations have been ordered into complaints of intimidation and harassment by the police. 

Join our call for accountability and justice. Sign the petition now!

Urge Edappadi K. Palaniswami, the Chief Minister and Home Minister of Tamil Nadu, to

  • Direct the immediate release of people held in administrative detention under the National Security Act unless they are charged with recognizable criminal offences, and end the use of administrative detention in Tamil Nadu.
  • Ensure prompt, independent and impartial investigations into complaints of intimidation and harassment by the police since 22 May.
  • Ensure prompt, independent and impartial investigations into the incidents of 22 May 2018, and ensure that those responsible for using excessive force are brought to justice.
  • Make public the 21 May 2018 order of the District Magistrate, Thoothikudi prohibiting the assembly of more than four people under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. 

Note: You can also add your voice to this petition by giving a missed call to 04433182121. Read more about our response to the issue here.