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Stir for Srisailam water turns violent

By Our Staff Reporter

NANDYAL Sept. 23. The six-day-old agitation by Nandi Raithu Samakhya for Srisailam waters turned violent on Tuesday with women activists ransacking the office of the Revenue Divisional Officer here.

Women, led by Parvathi, wife of the fasting former Municipal chairman, SPY Reddy, and the municipal councillor, Vijayalakshmi, gathered at the RDO office, barged into the chambers and went on the rampage. The protesters damaged the interiors of the chambers, glasspanes and almirahs. Some of the furniture was brought out and set on fire. The almirahs and files were topped in the main office.

The few policemen or the office staff could not stop the mob as doors were bolted inside. Later, the protesters squatted at the office demanding that the RDO make an formal announcement responding to the demands of the agitators. The entire operation, which was pre-planned, was executed by women activists alone. Men stood guard outside the office.

In the meantime, the male protesters pelted stones at three buses near Venkateswarapuram railway gate and damaged the vehicles.

Supporters of Nandi Raithu Samakhya are angry with the Government for its insensitive attitude towards the fasting leaders. They wish that the fast would be called off if the Government intervened and looked into their demand of stopping power generation at Srisailam and maintain water level to supply to the Right Canal.

Today's protest was believed to be intended to draw the attention of the Government for an early end to the agitation.

The arrest of agitationists sparked a second round of protest in Nandyal town on Tuesday night. According to reports, police took into custody about 100 activists holding them responsible for the violence at the RDO office. The activists of Nandi Raithu Samakhya staged a rasta roko at Bommala Satram and damaged two buses.

The SP, N. Sanjay, rushed to the place and supervised the security operations and arrest of the protesters.

Meanwhile, the Congress leaders, Mall Ravi, PCC secretary, Dharmana Prasada Rao, Varada Rambabu, TSA Naidu, MLAs, Kotla Suryaprakasa Reddy, DCC president, reached Nandyal on Tuesday night to hold discussions with the fasting leaders who included SPY Reddy, S. Mohan Reddy, Katasani Rambhupal Reddy and others.

The Congress leaders have tried to convince them to call off the fast in view of the peculiar situation over the water issue. The leaders were likely to call off the fast tonight.

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