Watch: Tamil Nadu BJP chief holds Vel Yatra without govt nod; ambulance stuck in traffic for 30 mins

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) state President L Murugan held the 'Vetri Val Yatra' in Koyambedu on Sunday without the state government's permission.

"Tamil Nadu government is allowing other parties to take out processions and hold agitation. It's my constitutional right to hold the Vetri Val yatra as well," L Murugan said.

Meanwhile, one can see that an ambulance was stuck in a traffic jam on Poonamallee High Road in Chennai for half an hour earlier today, during the 'Vetri Val Yatra'. Videos of the same went viral on social media.

The BJP leader was detained by the police and his supporters were also stopped from participating in the yatra on November 6.

The state BJP had decided to go ahead with the month-long 'Vetri Val Yatra' after the Tamil Nadu government denied them permission to hold the 'yatra' in view of COVID-19.

"Lord Murugan has given us permission. I want to pray to the Lord and it is my constitutional right. Every person has the right to worship. That is why I am proceeding to Thirutthani as we begin our 'Vetri Val Yatra'," Murugan said earlier.

The Tamil Nadu government had informed the Madras High Court that it has decided to deny permission for BJP's proposed ' Vetri Vel Yatra' in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 'Vetri Val Yatra' is a month-long religious trip to the six abodes of Lord Murugan beginning from the Thirutthani temple in the north of Tamil Nadu and culminating at Tiruchendur temple, in the southern part of the state.

The yatra, proposed to culminate at Tiruchendur temple in southern Tamil Nadu next month, was to 'expose' the DMK, which Murugan has accused of being behind the 'Karuppar Kootam' that denigrated "Kanda Sashti Kavacham", a spiritual hymn sung in praise of Lord Muruga.

The BJP would emerge as a major force in Tamil Nadu in the 2021 assembly elections, Murugan claimed, adding it would be the deciding factor in government formation.

BJP state general secretary K T Raghavan alleged the police "prevented him from moving out" of his home on Sunday.

A large number of party leaders and cadres from other parts of the state, particularly in Tambaram, Mahabalipuram and the neighbouring districts of Chennai were prevented from participating in the Vel Yatra programme scheduled today at Tiruvottiyur, Raghavan alleged.

Meanwhile, police said they arrested BJP Kancheepuram unit vice-president Selvamani early on Sunday in a case registered on a complaint by a revenue department official of Tiruttani that he allegedly manhandled Tiruvallur Superintendent of police P Aravindhan.

A group of BJP members on Friday allegedly shoved the district police chief when he went to disperse BJP workers squatting on a road, protesting the detention of Murugan that day.

(With inputs from PTI and ANI)

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