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Gangavaram still tense

By Our Special Correspondent

VISAKHAPATNAM, MARCH 1. The situation at the fishermen village of Gangavaram near Visakhapatnam Steel Plant continued to be tense on Tuesday after clashes between local fishermen and alleged beneficiaries of a `bogus' colony at the nearby Venkannapalem on Monday.

A large number of policemen were deployed and prohibitory orders under section 144 were imposed in the area. But, people were seen gathering in groups. With the fishermen not going for fishing on a Tuesday, there were more people in the village. Several persons were injured on Monday when the villagers of Gangavaram and Dibbapalem were allegedly attacked at the Venkannapalem junction.

The trouble was the result of a colony of fake beneficiaries allegedly created by the uncle of the Congress MLA, T. Gurumurthy Reddy, in a bid to grab the rehabilitation package for displaced persons of Gangavaram port. The Revenue Divisional Officer, Subhas Chanda Bose, asked the fishermen to form a 10-member committee to discuss their issues with the Collector and they are planning to go by the advice.

Meanwhile, some villagers attacked the house of Perla Appa Rao, suspecting to be a follower of the MLA. But the police dispersed them.

The Collector, Praveen Prakash, held a meeting with the officials at the MRO's office at Pedagantyada to review the situation.

Culprits identified

The Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police, A. Subba Rao, said that 10 persons involved in Monday's attacks were identified and would be arrested soon. Leaders of Bharatiya Janata Party, Telugu Desam Party, Communist Party of India and the CPI(Marxist) visited the villages and consoled the injured.

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