Tension prevailed at Bhanunagar for a short period on Wednesday, as residents of the area clashed with the police, and activists of Congress party and YSRC were engaged in a minor scuffle.
The problem started after South Central Railway officials pasted an eviction notice, which agitated the residents and they staged a dharna on the BRTS Road. Having come to know of the problem, YSRC party activists led by Y. Srinivas Rao, and Congress members led by V. Kishore reached the spot. Both the leaders blamed each other for the plight of the residents of Bhanunagar.
As the scuffle ensued between the two political parties, police had to intervene. They also physically tried to evict the agitators. This resulted in a tense situation and the police had to resort to a mild lathi charge to control the situation. Some of the women agitators were arrested.
According to the residents of Bhanunagar, about 400 families in over 100 houses had been living in the area for last four decades and about 10 years ago they were given pattas (documents) for the land occupied, by the then district Collector and MRO. The SCR had been asking them to vacate claiming that the land belonged to them.
“They pasted the notice, as the residents refused to take the eviction notice,” said YSRC Central constituency in-charge P. Gowtham Reddy. Mr. Gowtham also alleged that Congress MLA from Vijayawada Central M. Vishnu had a vested interest in the land and was calling the shots. He also said that the SCR had no written document to claim that the land belonged to them.