A cadre member belonging to a fringe Tamil party, Naam Tamilar, set himself ablaze in Chennai on Thursday, while protesting against the Cauvery dispute between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.
Naam Tamilar, led by party chief Seeman, held a protest rally from Pudupet to Egmore condemning recent acts of violence against Tamils in Karnataka and demanding the implementation of the final order of the Cauvery Tribunal.
More than 500 people participated in the protest rally including Vignesh, a 21-year-old man from Mannargudi in Tiruvarur district, who set himself ablaze during the march.
Vignesh was rushed to the Kilpauk Medical Hospital in Chennai where he is being treated for serious burn injuries.
In a suicide note recovered from his person, Vignesh mentions the imposition of Sanksrit in Tamil Nadu, the Cauvery dispute as well as the methane extraction project in the Cauvery basin among other issues.
On Wednesday, Vignesh had put up a Facebook post stating, "In tomorrow's rally there is a possibiity of a many suicide bids. I urge the media to telecast the rally live so that the channels can increase their TRPs. At least on seeing all of thus, let there be an uprising of the Tamil community. Let the student revolution begin in this land."
The immolation attempt comes a day ahead of the Tamil Nadu bandh called by trader organisations and farmers unions. Opposition parties have also extended support to the state-wide shutdown condemning the violence against Tamils in neighbouring Karnataka.