Home India Politics Pro and anti-Telengana demonstrators blockade trains

Pro and anti-Telengana demonstrators blockade trains


Hyderabad : Train services across Andhra Pradesh were affected Tuesday as groups supporting and opposing a separate Telangana state stopped several trains. Railway authorities cancelled 89 trains as a precautionary measure.

The “rail roko” protests in Telangana on one side and coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema on the other coincided with the crucial all-party meeting being held in New Delhi on the Telangana issue.

Dozens of trains were stopped by anti-Telangana protesters in Kadapa district of Rayalaseema and in Guntur and Krishna districts of coastal Andhra. A Joint Action Committee (JAC) of political parties and student groups have called for “rail roko” to protest the talks convened by union Home Minister P. Chidambaram.

Protesters in Guntur district stopped the Thiruvananthapuram-New Delhi Kerala Express and Macherla Express. Police said “rail roko” was being held in almost all railway stations in the district.

The usually busy Vijayawada railway station wore a deserted look Tuesday as protesters stopped trains while railway authorities cancelled 14 trains passing through the city.

In Kadapa district, anti-Telangana protesters stopped Venkatadri, Rayalaseema and Jayanti Express trains. In Anantapur district, the Guntakul-Hindupur train was detained.

A shutdown was observed in Andhra and Rayalaseema regions Monday to protest against the Telangana talks.

Road and rail blockades are also on in the Telangana region in response to the call given by the JAC of students fighting for a separate Telangana state. The JAC is protesting the arrests of several students on Sunday. The police prevented the students from attending the JAC meeting at Osmania University here.

At Kazipet junction in Warangal district, protesters stopped the Gorakhpur Express. Three passenger and three express trains were also detained at Vikarabad in Ranga Reddy district near here.

State-owned Road Transport Corporation (RTC) is operating most bus services on schedule, though some bus services between Hyderabad and Vijayawada were cancelled.

South Central Railway (SCR) has announced the cancellation of 89 trains in view of the “rail roko” protest by various groups. The cancelled trains include 63 MMTS and local trains in Hyderabad.

“Some passenger services have been cancelled to prevent damage to railway property. Since the state police have made arrangements for adequate security the cancellations have been kept to a bare minimum so as to not inconvenience the passengers. However if the situation turns volatile, South Central Railway may cancel/reschedule more trains at short notice,” a SCR statement said.

The railway authorities have also advised passengers boarding long distance trains to carry lots of food and water with them.