The proposed “Save Andhra Pradesh” public meeting by AP Non-Gazetted Officers’ Association on September 7 in support of the united State appears to be heading for a showdown with Telangana protagonists strongly opposing it.
As the police gave conditional permission for the meeting, the first one in the city by supporters of united Andhra Pradesh after announcement on bifurcation by Congress leadership, Telangana protagonists insisted that they too be given permission to conduct a “sadbhavana yatra’’ (peace rally) the same day. The police, however, denied permission. City Police Commissioner Anurag Sharma wanted the pro-Telangana organisations and groups to apply afresh giving date and venue for the meeting.
Aggrieved by the denial of permission, the Telangana Political JAC has called for a 24-hour Telangana bandh from Friday midnight. Though JAC leaders claimed that the bandh was in protest against attempts to stall the Telangana process, it has also called for blockade of the highways leading to the city, apparently to prevent employees of Seemandhra region from reaching here.
TRS president K. Chandrasekhar Rao, however, is understood to have told the JAC members that such meetings were unlikely to have any impact as the Congress leadership appeared to be firm on granting statehood to Telangana. Mr. Rao, who spoke to the TJAC members over telephone, is learnt to have asked them to conduct protests, if any, peacefully. The Osmania University students JAC has opposed the meeting while the MRPS founder Manda Krishna called for a bandh on September 7. Telangana advocates took to legal recourse and filed a petition in the High Court challenging the permission granted to the meeting. Undeterred by oppos -ition to the meeting, APNGOs Association president Ashok Babu reiterated that the Seemandhra employees would go ahead with it.