Wednesday, April 6, 2011


Congress President Sonia Gandhiwas accorded a warm reception when she arrived here from New Delhi to address election meetings at Puducherry and in the city, today.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M Karunanidhi, Union Minister Dayanidhi Maran, Congress spokesperson Jayanthi Natarajan, TNCC President K V Thangkabalu, former Union Minister E V K S Elangovan and state minister Arcot Veerasamy were among those who received her at the airport.

After a brief reception and interaction with the leaders, MsGandhi left for Puducherry by a helicopter to address an election meeting.

From Puducherry, she would arrive in the city at INS Adyar by a helicopter at 1700 hrs. She would drive down to Island Grounds to address an election meeting for the DMk-led DPA.

After the meeting, she would leave for INS Adyar at 1810 hrs and reach airport by the helicopter. She would leave for Kochi by the special flight at 1825 hrs.

Earlier, high drama was witnessed when Special Security Group officials denied entry for Mr Elangovan, Congress MP J M Haroon and legislator Ms D Yasodha.

Mr Karunanidhi, who came to receive Ms Gandhi, asked why they were standing outside and went in.

A few minutes later, when Mr Thangkabalu arrived, supporters of Mr Elangovan, Mr Haroon and Ms Yasodha prevented him from going inside.

They said unless the three leaders were allowed inside, they would not allow Mr Thangkabalu to go inside the airport.

However, after making some frantic calls, the SSG personnel came out and read out the names of Mr Elangovan, Mr Haroon and Ms Yasodha after which they were allowed inside.

Later, representatives of various TV channels staged a protest when Mr Thangkabalu took the crew of Mega TV, owned by him, to shoot the arrival of Ms Gandhi.

As other channels protested, Mr Thangkabalu said intimation was sent to all channels. Since there was no response from them, passes could not be arranged.

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