Telangana: Shutdown, More MLAs Quit, Transport Services Closed

On second consecutive day, MLAs continued to step down and shutdown and protests affecting life in coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema regions of Andhra Pradesh against creation of separate Telangana. Besides, State Assembly faced pandemonium on the issue and was deferred till Monday.

Protest by Lawyers

Lawyers from Telangana and non-Telangana regions came to blows in the High Court, ministers allegedly refused to acknowledge the presence of colleagues from the ‘other side’ at the state secretariat, and government employees reportedly asked each other to “get out” of their respective ‘states’.

Resignation Spree among MLAs On

More MLAs from coastal Andhra Pradesh and Rayalaseema resigned. A total of 132 lawmakers in the 294-member Assembly have now put in their papers.

Among those who quit today was Parchur MLA D Venkateshwara Rao, the husband of Daggubati Purandeswari, Union Minister of State for Human Resource Development. Elected members resigned from Zilla Parishads and municipalities across the Andhra region.

State Assembly  Adjourned

Turmoil in the House forced its adjournment until Monday. Chief Minister K Rosaiah called a meeting of the floor leaders of all parties to discuss the resignations. Rosaiah, who completed 100 tumultuous days in office today, said the Telangana resolution would not be moved without an all-party consensus.

“I cannot say when it will be moved, there is no time-frame,” Rosaiah said. “First we need a consensus. There is violence in Andhra and Rayalseema and students are getting violent and boycotting classes.” He appealed for calm “so that we resolve the issue peacefully”.

As emotions ran high, a statement made by Union Home Secretary G K Pillai – that he thought that Hyderabad would be the capital of Telangana – added fuel to the fire at the secretariat. Ministers from Andhra and Rayalseema called a meeting to discuss the statement and register their protest with Union Home Minister P Chidambaram.

Shutdown and Protests

Thousands of passengers had to face troubles as bus services were cancelled by Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) in the two regions.

Shutdown was quite effective with schools, colleges, shops and other business establishments remaining closed.

Students, who have launched fast-unto-death in Visakahaptnam, continued with it.  Protesters have also planned demonstrations in the port city during the day.

Similar hunger fasts were also observed in Kadapa, Kurnool and Chittor districts in Rayalaseema region.

In Vijayawada, banks, ATMs and business establishments remained closed.

Deputy Traffic Manger of APSRTC in Vijayawada Sudhakar said that a decision regarding resumption of bus services would be taken around noon after reviewing the situation.

Vijayawada Railway station Manager Bashker said that restrictions have been imposed on the speed of trains in view of the rail blockades and other agitations.

Congress, Telugu Desam and Praja Rajyam parties are expected to meet in the evening to decide the future course of agitation.

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