TDP leaders bring ox cart to Andhra Assembly to protest farmers’ issues

TDP leaders hurled slogans against CM YS Jagan Mohan Reddy, blaming him for delaying the Polavaram project and several other issues affecting farmers in the state.

The opposition Telugu Desam Party (TDP) on Monday September 19 attempted to besiege the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly, sparking mild tension in the area. Protest by TDP farmers’ cell leaders and workers led to chaos, as even ministers’ convoys were stuck in traffic jams. Protesters took police by surprise as they attempted to advance towards the Assembly building after scaling the walls of the electrical substation. The chairman of the TDP farmers’ cell, Mr Srinivas Reddy, and other leaders were arrested by the police, followed by a heated argument between the two parties.

The demonstrators were arrested and transferred to a police station. The demonstration caused traffic jams on the road leading to the State Secretariat. Convoys of ministers, MPs from the YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) and MLC were caught in traffic jams. The area sounded with the sirens of the escort vehicles of the VIP convoys. TDP leaders condemned the police action and argued that they had the right to protest. They alleged that their peaceful protest to highlight farmers’ issues was foiled by the use of force. They asked Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy how long he would run the government with the use of the police.

Previously, TDP lawmakers had tried to reach the Assembly with an ox cart. Launching slogans against the state government, TDP General Secretary Nara Lokesh, Kinjarapu Party State Chairman Atchannaidu and other lawmakers pulled the cart towards the Assembly building. The police arrested the TDP leaders and took away the cart without bulls. Police reportedly moved the cart to Thullur Police Station and deflated its tires. Opposition party leaders staged a protest outside the police station. TDP lawmakers carried signs with slogans saying “Jagan, the traitor of farmers”, “Where is the minimum support price”, “Farming against the faction” and “Crop holidays during Jagan’s rule” .