Protestors from various political groups including the main opposition party DMK demanded that the Prime Minister return to Delhi. They raised issue with the fact that the Central Government had failed to constitue the Cauvery Management Board on time.

The Supreme Court had ruled that the Centre was to form a board to oversee the sharing of river water between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu by March 29th. The Centre had asked for an extension on the deadline, citing the upcoming Karnataka Assembly elections, but the court refused this request.

Protestors wearing black T-shirts and waving black flags blocked traffic leading up to the Chennai Airport. Some went as far as to climb up the walls of the airport to wave their flags at the Prime Minister as he landed. Black balloons were also released by the agitators.

 

Members of Tamizhar Kalai Ilakkiya Panpattu Peravai, a forum of art, literary, and film personalities, announced that it would also participate. Several other prominent Tamil personalitites, including veteran director Bharathiraja, also indicated their involvement and their opposition to the Prime Minister’s visit.

 

In the face of the chaos, the Prime Minister travelled by helicopter to the exhibition venue. High security has been arranged at IIT Madras and at the Cancer Institute Adyar, where Modi is scheduled to visit following the exhibition.

 

 

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