Telugu Desam president N. Chandrababu Naidu and CPI leader K. Narayana were arrested by the police on Monday when they tried to rush towards the Secretariat from Indira Park in a protest against the state and Central governments’ “anti-farmer policies”.
The TD chief, who led a ‘Maha Dharna’ at Indira Park along with leaders and activists of the CPI and farmers’ organisations, had planned to lay siege to the Secretariat but police thwarted his intentions near Indira Park crossroads. Mr Naidu, Mr Narayana and others squatted on the road in protest. When the police tried to persuade them to clear the road, they got into an argument, which led to their arrest.
They were taken to the Banjara Hills police station and later released. Mr Naidu exhorted farmers across the state to take to the streets to press their demands and warned the governments that he would continue the agitation till their demands were met. Fresh from the party’s rout in the recent byelections, Mr Naidu has taken up the cause of farmers, who have been holding protests in other parts of the state as well. “Though the Congress has 31 MPs, they have failed to get the Central government support. This Congress government is a curse on farmers,” he remarked.