Protest

Image: Facebook/Vizag city police

Authorities in Andhra Pradesh have tightened the security in view of the shutdown called by the Left parties on Thursday to protest the injustice meted out to the state in the Union Budget 2018-19.

The Communist Party of India, the Communist Party of India-Marxist and several other smaller parties have called for the shutdown. YSR Congress and Congress have backed the shutdown call.

The ruling Telugu Desam Party (TDP) has also called for protests across the state to express solidarity with its MPs, who have been trying to stall the proceedings in both the Houses of Parliament to demand justice to the state.

The government has declared holiday for schools as a precautionary measure. Police have made elaborate security arrangements to prevent any untoward incident.

Director General of Police M. Malakondaiah has directed Superintendents of Police in all districts to take all measures to maintain law and order. The officials in districts have been asked to take precautionary measures to protect public property and also keep a tight vigil.

The police chief said additional forces were deployed in sensitive areas.

The TDP, an ally of BJP-led NDA, continued its protest in Parliament. The party MPs raised slogans during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's speech, demanding justice for the state.

Earlier, TDP president and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu asked his party MPs to continue the protest till a categorical announcement from the Centre. Though Union Ministers Rajnath Singh and Ananth Kumar spoke to Naidu over phone, urging to advise his MPs to cooperate during the Prime Minister's speech, Naidu made it clear that the protest will continue, TDP sources said.

Actor-politician Pawan Kalyan said the movement to get justice for Andhra Pradesh should be on the lines of the movement for separate Telangana state. The Jana Sena party chief remarked that two placards and four slogans will of no use.

He recalled that at the time of the state's bifurcation, then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had announced in Parliament that special category status will be accorded to Andhra Pradesh. Pawan said he had hoped that this commitment will be fulfilled after Narendra Modi formed the government at the Centre but this did not happen.

Pawan said his party would support shutdown observed peacefully and without causing inconvenience to people.
 

Read: Feb 8 Andhra Bandh: What services will be hit, and what will stay open