Kottayam: A symposium on Mullaperiyar Dam organized by 'Uyiru', a joint cultural forum of Tamil and Malayalam writers, social activists and artistes to find alternative solutions to the Mullaperiyar imbroglio ended in scuffle here Saturday.
The meet held at the Public Library hall saw some members of the Mullaperiyar Agitation Council (MAC) protesting against the function, and interrupting the discussions.
It was Congress MLA Mr V.T. Balram’s statement which seemed to have provoked a section of the participants. Balram’s statement, read out at the venue, called for an alternative solution other than the construction of a new dam. Just when the statement was read out, 20-odd people barged onto the dais shouting slogans, pushing the participants and disrupting the proceedings.
They shouted slogans against C P Roy, the former chairman of the MAC, and objected to Roy presenting a paper on 'alternative solutions to the issue other than a new dam'.
Policemen led by A J Thomas, CI, West Police Station tried to reason with the protesters, who finally calmed down after their representatives were allowed to participate in the discussions.
Earlier while inaugurating the symposium, Charu Nivedita, renowned Tamil writer, accused politicians of messing up the issue. "I am extremely sad about the Mullaperiyar Dam issue. It was politicians who worsened the matter, and it later became a weapon in the hands of fanatics," he said.
The talks were moderated by a panel comprising Dr J Devika of CDS, historian M Gangadharan and researcher T T Sreekumar. There were groups from Theni, Coimbatore and Nagercoil at the symposium.
'Uyiru' will hold the next round of discussions in Tamil Nadu.