Kadapa (AP): A complete shutdown was observed on the second successive day of the stir here against bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh with agitators trying to attack the district Congress office and two youth attempting self-immolation.
A statue of Indira Gandhi was vandalised at Indiramma colony near Mamillapalli village, on the outskirts of Kadapa town. Protesters were seen moving around with anti-Telangana joint action committee leaders like Chandrasekhar Reddy, Ramanaiah and Govardhan Reddy. More pictures here
All private business establishments, banks, government offices, hotels remained closed. Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) buses, private passenger buses as well as three wheelers were off the roads. Some of agitators tried to attack the District Congress Committee (DCC) office in Kadapa, though the police managed to prevent the attack.
The police also managed to prevent two students, Pavan Kumar Reddy and Ravikumar Reddy, from trying to self-immolate themselves before the DCC office, after they poured petrol on their heads, and arrested both of them.
Samaikyandhra supporters set statue of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on fire in a protest against the announcement of separate Telangana state in Kaddapa town on Thursday.
Students climbed cellular phone towers at Kadapa, Yerraguntla, Kodur and Badvel, demanding a reversal of the decision to bifurcate Andhra Pradesh and create a separate Telangana state. Agitators also surrounded the AP endowments minister's house and demanded his resignation.
Meanwhile, agitators filed a case with the Rajampeta police, stating that the Rajampeta Congress MP A Saipratap has been missing since two days. They urged the police to trace whereabouts of their MP and bring him back safely to their constituency at the earliest.
At Proddatur, agitators observed a shut down and partially a damaged Rajiv Gandhi statue. Former Proddatur MLA N Varadarajula Reddy, who was associated with the Congress for the last 30 years , resigned from the Congress party along with 200 of his followers.
In the East Godavari district, protests against the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh continued, with state-owned Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) buses and government properties being damaged.
Amalapuram MLA G V Harsh Kumar's son G V Sriraj, along with 500 members protested at Madurapudi, where the Rajahmundry airport is situated, by burning tyres in front of the gates of the airport's only terminal. Later, the police arrested ten people. He advised all Andhra-Rayalaseema MPs not to resign. He questioned the right of Telangana Rashtra Samiti's (TRS) K Chandrasekhar Rao to decide whether people from Andhra can stay at Hyderabad.
All educational, commercial, financial institutions including ATMs and government offices in the district remained closed and joined the on-going Samaikyandha agitation for a "united" Andhra Pradesh. Roads wore a deserted look after the withdrawal of APSRTC bus services in the district due to damage caused by agitators in Peddapuram, an APSRTC spokesman said. Agitators damaged the Rajahmundry Revenue Divisional Office (RDO), damaging its glass panels are completely.
The water levels of Godavari river at Dowleswaram barrage increased alarmingly even as the staff was participating in the ongoing agitation, an official said. The district administration is taking all necessary steps to monitor the water level at the barrage. Police personnel were patrolling vulnerable points in the district and security has been tightened at residences of Union ministers and state ministers, besides offices of political parties.
Agitators have also demanded that Rajahmundry should be made the new capital of bifurcated Andhra Pradesh, as it has all infrastructure facilities including water and power. Agitators damaged glass panels of the Rajahmundry Revenue Divisional Office (RDO).
At Aryapuram, Rashtriya Praja Congress members performed mock post-cremation rituals aimed at the BJP, TDP and Congress in protest against their attitude towards bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh.
A state government employee of APGENCO set ablaze his four-wheeler at Rajahmundry late last night in protest against the Congress Working Committee's decision to bifurcate Andhra Pradesh. Yesterday, the lawyers' joint action committee passed resolutions demanding immediate withdrawal of paramilitary forces and abstained from appearing in courts.