MDMK cadre led by party chief Vaiko staged a black flag demonstration against Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to Madurai on Sunday.
The cadre, who gathered at the Periyar bus stand junction, raised the slogan “Go back Modi” and waved black flags and placards accusing Mr. Modi of betraying Tamils. They also released black balloons as a mark of protest.
“We are not against the AIIMS project. But what right does Mr. Modi have to lay the foundation stone here? He did not even address the State when it was recovering from the impact of Cyclone Gaja and the Sterlite [police firing] incident,” Mr. Vaiko said.
Madurai deserved the prestigious health institute, and this was not a gift from the Centre, he said. He added that the Centre had failed T.N. on the Cauvery and other issues. He called the 10% quota for the economically backward in the general category a gimmick ahead of the polls. There was a minor scuffle as the police tried to detain the cadre.
The protests against the PM’s visit boiled over on Twitter, with the hashtag #gobackModi drawing nearly 5.92 lakh tweets by Sunday night.
The campaign was countered by those supporting his visit, with the hashtags #MaduraithanksModi and #TNWelcomesModi.
In fact, the twitter storm began as early as on Saturday evening, with #gobackModi trending for more than 12 hours. At one point, it was the top-trending hashtag worldwide.