ANDHRA PRADESH

YSR visits tribal's widow, asks Goud to resign

MYSIGANDI (Mahbubnagar dt) Feb. 15. After consoling the widow of tribal trader, Ranawat Bheema, who was killed by drunken policemen here, the Leader of the Opposition, Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy, on Friday demanded resignation of the Home Minister, T. Devender Goud, owning moral responsibility.

Addressing a press conference following a visit to the spot near the temple where the incident took place on Monday, Dr. Reddy, who led a Congress Legislature Party team, said the Home Minister's resignation was necessary to send a right signal on protection to the Scheduled Tribes and other weaker sections. He also demanded constitution of a Special Court for immediate trial and prompt action.

He said the issue of police excesses, especially against weaker sections and minorities would be raised in the Assembly and already a notice under Rule 304 had been submitted. He was accompanied by Congress MLAs, G. Chinna Reddy, P. Govardhan Reddy, P. Shankar Rao, Gurunatha Reddy, Gadenna, J. Krishna Rao and P. Sudhir Kumar, APCC Vice-President, Devara Subba Rao, APCC SC/ ST Cell and Jagadishwar Reddy, Mahbubnagar DCC president.

When Dr. Rajasekhara Reddy met the widow, Manga, she broke down while narrating the incident and her only demand was, "Bring back my husband. I am not interested in money.'' Dr. Reddy explained to her that besides helping her monetarily, they could only build pressure on the Government to do justice. Her two children, one- and- a- half- year- old son and a four- month- old daughter, her parents, mother and father in-law and other relatives stood by her side. Bheema's brother said as the police started beating him up, he and others ran away fearing a similar fate.

Dr. Reddy said such atrocities on weaker sections and police high- handedness have been rising all over the State, especially in Mahabubnagar. At Bijnepally, police beat up the husband of the sarpanch after a Food-for-work programme meeting. Then at a District Development Review Committee meeting attended by Health Minister, N. Janardhan Reddy, the TDP members tried to attack the CLP secretary, Chinna Reddy. A Dalit youth was burnt alive at Kalvakolu village and two industrialists were beaten up by policemen at Kothur, for denying steel for construction of a police station.

Most of these incidents were because of too much interference by Ministers and TDP MLAs. Corrupt, biased and inefficient police officers were posted in key places, shifting honest officers.

Two sub-inspectors were transferred from Amangal police station, where the latest incident took place, at the behest of the local TDP MLA. The DSP at Nagarkurnool continued for five years with a Minister's patronage. The Hyderabad Police Commissioner was promoted as a reward for acting tough against minorities in the Old City during the MCH elections. No action was taken against six policemen who had raped a tribal woman in Nalgonda district.

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