Police said about 30 activists marched into Kenneth Lane from Gandhi Irwin Road shouting slogans. The contingent of policemen stationed in the lane stopped them a few metres away from the Maha Bodhi Society. As many as 19 of them were held while the rest escaped. Barricades were put up on either side blocking the otherwise busy lane. Police said about 150 Sri Lankans, including 20 Buddhist monks, were at the society.
Security was beefed up at all Sri Lankan establishments in the city, including the Sri Lankan Airlines office, Bank of Ceylone and Sri Lankan Deputy High Commission in Nungambakkam.
The attempt to besiege the Maha Bodhi Society comes after a Buddhist monk from Sri Lanka was reportedly attacked by members of pro-Tamil outfits when he visited the Thanjavur’s Big Temple on Saturday.
In Mylapore, about 50 residents of Visalakshi Thottam burnt an effigy of Rajapaksa, police said.