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In AP, Maharashtra police beats up TDP activists

By Mohammed Siddique
Last updated on: July 18, 2010 17:10 IST
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Tension prevailing on the Andhra-Maharashtra border in Nizamabad district for the last three days over Telugu Desam president N Chandrababu Naidu's arrest on Sunday took a turn with the Maharashtra police crossing in to the neighbouring state's area and targeting Telugu Desam Party supporters.

Meanwhile, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister K Rosaiah said that he spoke to his Maharashtra counterpart Ashok Chavan on the issue.

"I told him that this was not the way friends from neighbouring state should be treated." Rosaiah told him that the Maharashtra government should allow the Leader of Opposition from Andhra Pradesh to visit Babhili project.

Indiscriminate lathicharge by Maharashtra police on the crowd left at least 10 persons, including journalists injured. Similarly TDP supporters and the media from Andhra Pradesh were also targeted in Dharmabad town of Maharashtra where Naidu and 74 other leaders of the party were kept in judicial custody.

Naidu, who had led a bus yatra to Maharashtra to protest against "illegal" construction of Babhili project on river Godavari was taken in to custody on Friday and was presently in judicial custody till Monday.

Tension increased after a procession was taken out under the leadership of Nanded MP Bhaskar Patil shouting slogans against Naidu and Telugu Desam leaders.

"They were telling us that Andhra journalists were giving only the version of Andhra Pradesh and not of Maharashtra," he said.

TDP workers alleged the Andhra Pradesh police deployed near the border kept quiet even as the Maharashtra police entered Andhra territory up to two kilometres and beat them up.

Meanwhile, protest demonstrations by Telugu Desam party were continuing all over the state against Naidu's arrest and other party leaders, including two MPs and 50 MLAs. Party has called for a statewide strike on Monday demanding justice to Andhra Pradesh and immediate release of TDP leaders.

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Mohammed Siddique in Hyderabad