The Samaikhyandhra agitation in West Godavari district was marked by a novel protest seeking the resignation of Union Minister for Tourism K. Chiranjeevi in Palacol on Wednesday.
A wall poster hung from the statue of veteran film comedian Allu Ramalingaiah, also father-in-law of the Union Minister, in his hometown reads in Telugu as if Allu Ramalingaiah is making an appeal to his son-in-law, saying “It is the people who are responsible for you and me (Allu Ramalingaiah) to reach heights in public life and in film career as well. Kindly, step down from your post in line with the wishes of the people. The integrationists who look at me throw tantrums upon you which I cannot bear to hear.”
This turned out to be a centre of attraction in the heart of the town, drawing crowds throughout the day.
RTC employees’ resolve
Meanwhile, the Samaikhyandhra movement is all set to gain momentum with the RTC employees taking a plunge into the agitation from August 12 midnight under the banner of the National Mazdoor Union. According to R.V.S.S.D. Prasad, zonal secretary of the NMU, the union took a decision to launch an indefinite strike against the move for bifurcation of the State at its meeting held in Guntur on Wednesday.
A fleet of 13,000 buses will go off the road and 70,000 employees from the RTC will stay away from duties in the Seemandhra region with 123 depots covering 13 districts in line with the NMU’s decision.
The union leader said the existence of the APSRTC, the cheapest medium of transport for the poor and middle class people, would come under a serious threat if the State was divided and that the NMU had taken up cudgels for the cause of Samaikhyandhra.
The district reeled under the impact of the agitation on Wednesday also. The Kolkata-Chennai National Highway-5 was blocked by integrationists from Denduluru near Asram Medical College for a couple hours on the city outskirts. Logs and boulders were placed on the Narayanapuram-Ganapavaram road, resulting in disruption of traffic on the road.