Telangana march: Police suspect Maoist role in fomenting trouble

Police Commissioner Anurag Sharma said the role of “Left-wing extremists” is being suspected in stirring up the violence resulting in massive damage to properties and arson as the activists defied prohibitory orders and joined the ‘Telangana march’ for a separate state. “There are inputs that some Left-wing extremist groups infiltrated the movement leading to attacks on private properties and other damages,” Sharma told a press conference held here in the backdrop of violent clashes between pro-Telangana activists and police in many parts of the city throughout the day.

Sharma said the Telangana Political Joint Action Committee (JAC) went back on its word to organise a peaceful march although police exercised maximum restraint in quelling the protests that involved damage to property and arson. “Though we tried our best by making all arrangements and even gave the protesters specific areas, routes towards the venue i.e Sanjeevaiya Park on Necklace Road, but some of them tried to break the barricades at Tankbund where immersion of Ganesha idols was going on. They also violated prohibitory rules and when police objected, they threw stones at police,” Sharma said.

He pegged the number of pro-Telangana activists participating in the march at 80,000-1 lakh. On overall damage to public and private properties, Sharma said 25 police vehicles were damaged — three of them burnt — by arsonists, while a railway cabin and railway track at near Necklace Road station were also damaged. “In addition, protesters pelted stones at trains, attacked media persons and damaged two OB vans of two Telugu channels,” he said. Sharma said altogether 19 policemen were injured, two seriously, in stone-pelting.

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