The arrest of Congress MP from Vijayawada Lagadapati Rajagopal at the Shamsabad airport in Hyderabad sparked off instantaneous protests in the city and elsewhere in Krishna district, with a few of his supporters making an unsuccessful bid to end their lives in Andhra Ratna Bhavan, the headquarters of the city Congress committee.
The police who were present there responded in time and seized a few bottles containing apparently kerosene. The supporters locked themselves up in the office and raised slogans against the arrest.
As soon as the news spread in the city, protests broke out at several places.
The MP's supporters staged a rasta-roko at Moghalrajapuram and Benz Circle, throwing traffic out of gears. Another group of his supporters decided to get tonsured as a mark of protest.
Heavy police deployment could be seen at every major centre and on the arterial roads, even as bandh was observed for the fourth successive day with schools remaining closed and buses staying off the roads.
The police continued to keep a watch on the supporters of united Andhra Pradesh movement, preventing anyone from here to go to Hyderabad in support of Mr. Rajagopal. Mayor M.V. Ratna Bindu and others were prevented from going to Hyderabad.
The last few days of political developments, especially the arrest of Mr. Rajagopal, has rather interestingly brought Congress and TDP leaders together on the issue of keeping the State unified.
While Congress leaders already expressed their solidarity with the TDP MLA Devineni Umamaheswara Rao and others who began their fast-unto-death on Sunday, Mr. Rao in a way reciprocated the gesture by condemning the arrest of Mr. Rajagopal.