Tense situation prevailed at Araku on Thursday around noon following an attack on the car of Union Minister and Araku Lok Sabha constituency Congress nominee Kishore Chandra Deo.

The Union Minister was going in his car from Araku to Paderu to file his nomination papers for the Lok Sabha constituency. As his car was crossing Araku, a group of persons, said to be supporters of Setti Gangadhara Swamy, who was an aspirant of the Congress ticket for Araku Assembly, stopped the vehicle and attacked it with sticks.

At that time, some YSR Congress activists were also passing by in a rally.

The police tried to bring the situation under control by wielding their lathis on the attackers and, in the process, some YSR Congress activists were injured. The party activists retaliated and pelted the police with stones. The windscreen and bonnet of Mr. Deo’s car were badly damaged, but the Minister escaped unhurt and proceeded to Paderu.

“The YSRC activists were going in a procession and some of them climbed on the bonnet of my car. The party activists damaged my windscreen with sticks. Had the glass broken, they would have killed me. If this is the way they behave, the plight of the people can be imagined if that party comes to power. The attack, which lasted for about an hour, was without provocation and it is an assault on the democratic process,” Mr. Deo told The Hindu over phone.

“The attack was perpetrated by a Congress rebel group and the YSR Congress procession was passing that way. SI Narayana Rao sustained simple injuries in stone pelting by the mob,” Araku Inspector Y. Murali said.

He said that a case was registered, but no one was taken into custody.

Mr. Deo subsequently filed his nomination papers at Paderu.