Sharmila, who plans to launch a new political party in Telangana in July, undertook a fast to demand that the state government issue job notifications for unemployed youth.

YS Sharmila in a red saree seated on a platform during her fast demanding job notifications for Telangana unemployed youth at Indira Park Image Credit: IANS
news Protest Friday, April 16, 2021 - 09:16

Hyderabad police on Thursday detained former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy's daughter YS Sharmila as she tried to continue her fast demanding job notifications for Telangana's unemployed youth. She was taken into custody as she tried to take out a ‘padayatra’ (walkathon) after police forcibly ended her fast at Indira Park. Police forcibly ended her protest as the permission was given for a one-day fast, though she had applied for a three-day fast.

Police stopped Sharmila at the Telugu Talli flyover when she, along with her supporters, was walking towards her Lotus Pond residence in Banjara Hills. There was even a stampede-like situation. At one stage, she collapsed and was briefly unconscious.

She was later dropped at her residence. Sharmila, however, staged a sit-in outside her residence and made it clear that she will continue the fast till all her supporters are released by the police.

Condemning the police action against her and her supporters, she targeted Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao.

Sharmila, who plans to launch a new political party in Telangana in July, undertook the fast to demand the state government issue job notifications for unemployed youth.

The sister of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy questioned the silence of CM KCR on suicides by unemployed youth. She said the Chief Minister should respond to the burning problem.

She said she would stand with the unemployed youth who are seeking jobs. "Whether other opposition parties speak for you or not, I will stand by you," she told the youth.

She said fasts and protests will continue across the state till the state government issues job notifications to fill the vacancies in various government departments. She alleged that, dejected over the delay in job notifications, unemployed youth were ending their lives but the Chief Minister is neglecting the issue.

Recalling that youth were in the forefront of the movement for statehood to Telangana, she demanded that Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) government fulfil their aspirations by providing them jobs.

"There are 1.91 lakh vacancies. The government should fill them," she said and appealed to youth not to resort to suicides, assuring them that she would lead the fight to pressurise the government to issue job notifications.

Unemployed youth, students and leaders of various groups met her during the fast and expressed their solidarity.

Sharmila undertook the fast a week after addressing a public meeting at Khammam, where she announced that she will launch her political party on July 8, the birth anniversary of her father. She said she would unveil the flag, name and ideology of the new party on July 8.

The public meeting at Khammam was also addressed by Sharmila's mother YS Vijayamma, who appealed to people to bless her daughter with their support.

Vijayamma also shared the dais with Sharmila at Thursday's fast. An interesting incident at the venue caught the attention of all and triggered speculations.

Asking video camera persons to move aside, Sharmila remarked that Sakshi (the media house owned by her brother) will not give coverage. Vijayamma, who was sitting next to her, was apparently taken aback. She immediately patted her hand in what seemed to be a signal asking her to stop.

Sharmila has been holding meetings with loyalists of her late father in Telangana for more than a month as part of the preparations to float a political party here.

Read: It’s official: YS Sharmila to launch party in Telangana on July 8

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