In Anantapur district, thousands of people take to the streets denouncing the Centre’s decision approving the creation of a separate Telangana State

After more than two months of protests, protests erupted in the coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema regions on Thursday as the news of Union Council of Ministers approving creation of separate Telangana spread across the 13 districts.

The joint action committees announced a 72-hour bandh in Kadapa district. Anantapur, which has turned volatile since Thursday morning, is expected to be shut down for the next 48 hours. Thousands of agitated people came on to the streets and blocked traffic on major thoroughfares in several towns.

A few activists surrounded the house of Congress MP Ananta Vankatrami Reddy. A group of protesters laid siege to National Highway 44 passing through Anantapur town. The protesters continued thronging the residences of important leaders, including APCC president Botcha Satyanarayana, and several MPs making attempts to lay siege to them, in vain.

Effigies burnt

The protesting Seemandhra activists blocked the movement of vehicles on the national highways with Anantapur bearing the brunt of the agitation. There were demonstrations in different parts of the Seemandhra region where activists burnt the effigies of Congress president Sonia Gandhi, TRS president K. Chandrasekhar Rao and the Telangana note that was approved by the Union Cabinet. Two leaders of the joint action committee for save AP attempted to commit suicide in Anantapur to protest against the bifurcation, but their attempts were foiled by their colleagues. Sensing trouble, the Union Home Ministry had asked the State police officials to be on high alert to avert any untoward incidents.

Director General of Police B. Prasada Rao alerted the superintendents of police of the 13 districts as well as senior officials in the twin cities to be on high alert to tackle any eventuality after the Centre announced its decision.

Today is the 66th day of the agitation in Seemandhra which has completely paralysed functioning of government offices and grounded public transport.