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TDP's strike call over Naidu's arrest hits normal life in AP
Hyderabad, December 20, 2010
The state-wide general strike called by the opposition Telugu Desam Party (TDP) to protest the arrest and shifting of its fasting president N Chandrababu Naidu to hospital hit normal life in Andhra Pradesh today.
Reports reaching here said TDP workers came to the streets and in several places prevented the Andhra Pradesh Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) buses from plying in towns and cities.
In several places, TDP workers forced the traders to close down their shops and business establishments and the window panes of the APSRTC buses were damaged at Kacharu in Rajahmundry Rural Mandal in East Godavari district.
Similar incidents were reported in Guntur and Nalgonda districts.
Vehicular traffic came to a grinding halt at several places in the state as the TDP leaders and functionaries blocked roads.
The Left parties extended full support to the "bandh" and termed the arrest and shifting of Mr Naidu to the Nizam Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS) as "undemocratic".
In the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad, the bandh was partial and incident-free. In some areas, shops were open and in other areas businessmen downed shutters of their establishments. Central and State Goverment offices were working as usual.
Autorickshawss and some APSRTC buses were plying and police deployed in full strength in the city to prevent any untoward incidents.
A report from Vijayawada said the bandh call evoked good response as all commercial establishments and educational institutions remained closed and protests organised in front of APSRTC Bus Complexes in Krishna, Guntur and West Godavari Districts. Cinemas cancelled noon shows.
Police arrested the agitating TDP activists, including MLA D Umameshwara Rao and M Babu.
TDP activists at Machavaram in the heart of the city, where several colleges were located, obstructed college buses and forced the managements to declare a holiday.
The TDP activists organised road blockades at several places, including at Gollapudi, Kanchakacharla, Nandigama, Jagaiahpet on the busy Machilipatnam-Pune highway and several places on the Chennai-Kolkata highway, resulting in hundreds of vehicles stranded on either side of the roads.
In Guntur, the TDP activists went on the rampage pelting stones on RTC buses, smashing the wind screens of several of them. All the commercial establishments and educational institutions in the city remained closed. The Acharya Nagarjuna University cancelled engineering and post-graduate semester examinations in view of the bandh.
In West Godavari district, TDP activists staged a "dharna" in front of the RTC Bus Complexes at Eluru, Kovvuru and Jangareddy Gudem, obstructing the services.