Security for Sri Lankan tourists to Chennai has been beefed up following Thursday's attack on some Sri Lankan nationals by activists of a pro-LTTE outfit.
The police have increased vigil in and around the Mahabodhi Society on Kenneth Lane in Egmore, where a Buddhist meditation centre is located. The 'Q' Branch, which monitors activities of LTTE sympathisers and Sri Lankan nationals in the state, is overseeing the security along with the police. Security has been tightened even in areas such as T. Nagar, where Sri Lankan visitors are known to visit in large numbers.
Rev. Mahanama Thero, a monk at the Maha Bodhi Society said, "There is peace now and the pilgrims are feeling safe with the police presence. The Q branch is monitoring the security of the visitors. The group that was attacked left for Colombo today.''
After Thursday's attack, several Sri Lankan pilgrim groups were moved by the Deputy High Commission to the Mahabodhi Centre to ensure their safety.
On Friday, Lankan officials expressed satisfaction at the security provided. The island nation's Deputy High Commissioner to India, Vadivel Krishnamoorthy, told TOI.
"We are grateful to the Tamil Nadu government for ensuring the safety of Sri Lankan pilgrims, the incident was unfortunate,'' he said. Many of the pilgrims who spoke to TOI did not appear alarmed at the incident. One elderly woman said, "We are here to pray for the peace of everyone."
Police commissioner J. K. Tripathy said, "We have intensified security and any visitor to the city will be safe. The accused have been arrested and remanded in judicial custody." (Times of India)