Protests against Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy’s proposal that Andhra Pradesh might have three capital cities continued on Friday. A large number of farmers squatted on the roads and blocked vehicular traffic in 29 capital villages, including Velagapudi, where the State Legislature and Secretariat are located.
The irate farmers were cooking food on the streets and shouting anti-government slogans strongly deploring the Chief Minister’s thinking on what is being touted as a decentralised model of development.
Scores of farmers sat on relay hunger strike across the Amaravati Capital Region, where police were deployed in a big numbers to prevent any untoward incident.
Protests to intensify, may meet Governor and PM
As Ministers kept signalling that the Secretariat would be shifted to Visakhapatnam, the High Court to Kurnool, and retaining the Legislative Council and Assembly at Velagapudi, farmers and civil society organisations vowed to intensity their protests and resolved to meet the Governor and even Prime Minister Narendra Modi to express their concern.
“Even if we agree, how will the government give back our lands where infrastructure has already been created?” some farmers questioned, while hoping that the retired IAS officer G.N. Rao-led Expert Committee would recommend that the capital should not be divided into three parts as per the idea floated by Mr. Jagan Mohan Reddy.
Meanwhile, Jana Sena political affairs committee chairman Nadendla Manohar and other party leaders expressed solidarity with the protests by sitting along with them in the hunger strike camps.