Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens: Protests in Tamil Nadu January 23, 2017

This is an update to the previous emergency message sent on January 19, 2017.  Protests continue across Tamil Nadu, including at Marina Beach in Chennai, regarding the practice of bull taming (jallikattu).  Various sources have reported confrontations between police and protestors in Chennai and in other cities across the state that in some cases have turned violent.  Some schools and businesses have reportedly closed as a precaution.  Media have covered spontaneous demonstrations occurring on multiple thoroughfares in Chennai causing blockages and other disruptions to transportation.

U.S. citizens are reminded that even gatherings intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence.  You should avoid areas of demonstrations, and exercise caution if in the vicinity of any large gatherings, protests, or demonstrations.

Review your personal security plans; remain aware of your surroundings, including local events; and monitor local news stations for updates.  Maintain a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security.

For further information about security in India:

  • See the State Department’s travel website for the Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and India Country Specific Information.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler-Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive security messages and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Contact the U.S. Consulate General Chennai in India located at 220 Anna Salai, Chennai, India at +91-44-2857-4000 from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. After-hours emergency number for U.S. citizens is +91-44-2857-4000.
  • Call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
  • Follow us on Twitter and Facebook