TN temple priest, son hacked to death for opposing encroachment

    An old temple priest and his son were hacked to death by a gang of criminals for opposing their bid to encroach upon the banks of a village lake at Mudalaipatti village in Karur district of Tamil Nadu on Monday.

    Veeramalai, 71, and his 41-year-old son Nallathambi had been campaigning against encroachment in the area. They took up the matter with the authorities seeking clearing the encroachments. The criminals first hacked to death the senior priest at his home. Later they waylaid the son and killed.

    The lake spread over 40 acres of land was a major source of water for the village. But over the years, developers and other influential persons in the locality started encroaching upon the lake to turn it into agricultural fields.

    The duo’s campaign had upset a few people in the locality. The two used to get death threats and physical attacks. However, they continued with their campaign which infuriated the criminals.

    Recently, the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court had ordered the local administration to remove of all encroachments in the lake. Soon after, officials carried out a survey and removed 50 encroachments. The encroachers had pledged revenge on the duo.