Security boost for Chennai IPL game amid water protests

Police ordered thousands of extra security forces to protect an Indian Premier League cricket game in Chennai on Tuesday amid threats of protests over a mounting water crisis.

The protests have cast a shadow over Chennai Super Kings first home game in two years after a two-year ban for illegal gambling.

Tamil groups have said they could protest at the match against Kolkata Knight Riders, the second match for both teams in the new IPL season.

“Around 4,000 police personnel will stand guard around the ground. We have covered all bases to make sure that nothing goes wrong,” a Tamil Nadu state police spokesman told AFP.

Tamil Nadu has seen mounting protests in the past week over a disputed accord with neighbouring Karnataka state on how to share water from the key Cauvery river.

The state government had recommended IPL games be moved out of Chennai because of the protests but said they would provide security if they went ahead.

The Chennai stadium is scheduled to host seven IPL matches between April 10 and May 20.

The Super Kings have also told the sellout crowd that they will not be allowed to take mobile phones into the ground as well as bags and electronic devices.

Some state politicians and activists have lashed out at the Board of Control for Cricket in India for holding IPL matches in the southern state.

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