Kollywood organized a silent protest Sunday, April 8, against the delay in constituting the Cauvery Management Board, and to extend support to the ongoing agitation against the Sterlite plant in Thoothukudi.

Many big names in the Kollywood participated in the protest, organized by Nadigar Sangam at Chennai's Valluvar Kottam. Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan spearheaded the silent protest and Ilayaraaja, Vairamuthu, Ilayathalapathy Vijay, Vikram, Suriya, Sivakarthikeyan, Dhanush, Sathyaraj, Vijay Sethupathi, Vikram Prabhu, Nasser and the members of the actors' guild joined them. 

Shankar, Kamal Haasan and Rajinikanth
A picture of Shankar, Kamal Haasan and Rajinikanth at the Nadigar Sangam protest event.Nikkil Murugan Twitter Account

Many stars, including Thala Ajith, Simbu, Jayam Ravi, Arya, Jiiva, and Atharvaa, failed to turn up. Leading actresses Trisha Krishnan, Nayantara, Samantha, Kajal Aggarwal, and Tamannaah Bhatia also gave the protest a miss. 

The reason for their absence is not known yet. But Simbu has come out in open stating that he did not attend it as he felt the silent protest was not the best option to solve the issue.

In a press meet, he made an emotional appeal to Kannadigas. "The Cauvery issue can get nationwide attention only if we all stand together. MS Dhoni must understand the emotions of Tamil Nadu and Tamil people and act accordingly. If we request the mothers of Karnataka for a glass of water after they quench their thirst, they are surely not going to say no. Instead of staying quiet, we must talk for our rights," Behindwoods quotes the actor as saying.

The Supreme Court in February delivered its final verdict on the longstanding dispute among the South Indian states over Cauvery water sharing. The apex court reduced Tamil Nadu's share of water, but the state had the reason to cheer as the order wanted the center to form the Cauvery Management Board within six weeks.

With the center failing to constitute the board before the March 29 deadline set by the SC, the political parties in Tamil Nadu are putting pressure on the BJP-led NDA government at the center, demanding the formation of the board at the earliest. 

Besides the Cauvery issue, protest is brewing in Tamil Nadu against the expansion of Sterlite Copper plant in its Thoothukudi factory. The villagers are opposing the expansion, alleging that the copper smelter is polluting the water, soil, and air in the locality.