Hundreds of slogan-shouting students held a rally in the Osmania University campus in Hyderabad on Thursday and staged a demonstration in front of the nearby police station in support of statehood for Telangana.
The heavy police force, comprising the anti-riot Rapid Action Force and other paramilitary forces, prevented the students from taking out a mock funeral procession of United Progressive Alliance leaders and stopped them in front of the OU police station.
A tense situation prevailed in the campus, a hotbed of pro-Telangana agitations, after students refused to disperse despite repeated requests from senior police officials.
Angered over the Centre's latest statement calling for wide-ranging consultations with all political parties and groups on Telangana issue, some members of the Joint Action Committee of Osmania University Students Association began a hunger strike in front of the arts college.
Security personnel surrounded the students even as pro-Telangana activists were chased away in Manikeswari Nagar adjoining the campus. Prohibitory orders have been imposed banning rallies and processions in and around the university and in the city till January 1.
The Centre on Thursday rushed 1,150 additional paramilitary men to Andhra Pradesh in the wake of a 48-hour bandh called by the Telangana Rashtra Samiti.
Ten companies of the Central Reserve Police Force were airlifted from New Delhi as well as from Jalandhar and Chandigarh to be sent to Hyderabad, a senior home ministry official said. With this, the total strength of central forces in the state will increase from 28 companies to 38 companies, comprising nearly 4,000 men.