Police said the worker, identified as M Raja, 36, deployed at corporation's thermal power station I, reached mine II around 1pm. He attempted to enter the mine to meet his friend when a CISF constable posted for duty prevented him and asked him to show entry pass.
Only workers deployed in mine II can enter the unit while others, including workers posted at other units, should produce a valid pass to enter the unit.
The worker, who did not possess a pass, asked the security personnel to permit him to enter the mines. Soon an altercation broke out between the two. In a fit of rage, the constable fired three rounds at the worker from a close range. The worker sustained bullet injuries on the head and died on the spot.
Hearing the gunshot, contract workers gathered in large numbers at the gate. As soon as the tragic death of the worker, who is from a nearby hamlet -- Ajeesh Nagar - spread, people from his locality started gathering at the scene leading to a tense situation. The contract workers and the villagers, led by leaders of all major trade unions, staged a protest to condemn the killing of the worker. They attempted to picket the mine II when CISF personnel resorted to lathicharge the mob.
Later, the protesters pelted stones at the CISF personnel. Security personnel attacked the protesters by pelting stones and lathicharged them to disperse them. They managed to drive the protesters for a brief while. However, within a few minutes the protesters resumed the attack by pelting stones at the security personnel. They ransacked the CISF office, damaging furniture.
A few vehicles too were damaged in the attack.
In the meantime the protesters, who staged a dharna with the dead body, did not permit an ambulance to take the body to the hospital. The district police teams arrived and lathicharged the mob. The township looked like a war zone following the clash between the security personnel and the workers.
A heavy posse of policemen was deployed at the township to prevent any untoward incident. Cuddalore superintendent of police A Radhika reached the township and reviewed the security arrangement.
More than 20 people, who were injured in the melee, were admitted at NLC general hospital. Mining operations at the mine II were affected for a brief while when more than 7,000 workers, including 3,500 regular workers, boycotted work. They demanded compensation to the family of the deceased and a permanent job at NLC for a family member of the deceased. They also sought the government to withdraw CISF from the premises.
The AITUC will stage demonstrations at all district headquarters in the state on Tuesday to protest against the killing of the worker.
While condemning the incident, Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) leader Vaiko sought the government to provide a compensation of Rs 10 lakh and job to a family member of the deceased worker.
He said the attack on workers on NLC premises has become common ever since the CISF personnel were pressed into service. He urged the NLC management to ensure protection of workers.