Hartal shuts down Batticaloa district
[TamilNet, Friday, 17 March 2006, 09:05 GMT]
A district-wide hartal, called by the Eastern University society, protesting against the increasing abductions by paramilitary cadres, has paralyzed the entire Batticaloa district Friday. Business establishments, government offices, markets, schools, private and public sector bank branches remain closed.
Protestors blocked the traffic on the main roads linking Batticaloa with Kalmunai and Valaichenai with burning tyres.
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) troopers and policemen were seen deployed all around the key areas in Batticaloa district.
In the meantime, nine armed men belonging to paramilitary Karuna Group entering the Ceylon Transport Board (CTB) depot located on Batticaloa Trincomalee Road around 9:00 a.m. beat the drivers and conductors and threatened them to drive the busses.
The paramilitary cadres had come in a jeep and a white van, a depot official said.