Hyderabad, March 11 (IANS) The destruction of statues of prominent Telugu personalities during the Telangana million march here a day earlier rocked the Andhra Pradesh assembly Friday with the opposition demanding the Congress government’s resignation for its failure to protect them.
The house was adjourned twice as legislators of Telugu Desam Party (TDP) from the Andhra and Rayalaseema regions stalled the proceedings, insisting on a debate on Thursday’s incidents.
TDP members, who earlier visited Tank Bund to see the damaged statues, were on their feet as soon as the house met for the day. They rushed towards the speaker’s podium after Deputy Speaker Nadendla Manohar disallowed their adjournment motion.
The deputy speaker agreed with members that the destruction of statues was an insult to Telugus but advised them to condemn the incident in one voice instead of stalling proceedings.
Amid the pandemonium, the house was adjourned for half-an-hour. When it re-assembled, the TDP legislators again rushed to the podium.
The government agreed to make a statement on the issue after question hour but the opposition wanted the house to suspend other business to discuss the issue. The deputy speaker had to again adjourn the house.
Before reaching the assembly, the TDP members visited Tank Bund where 16 statues were pulled down by protestors during the million march.
The government should own responsibility for failing to protect the statues. This is an insult to the Telugu people, said TDP member P. Keshav.
Another TDP leader, Ashok Gajapati Raju, said he was pained to see the destruction of the statues of great leaders.
Leader of opposition and TDP chief N. Chandrababu Naidu also passed through the area and looked at the damaged statues from his car.
Taking strong exception to the attitude of their party colleagues from other regions, TDP legislators from Telangana held a meeting and decided to boycott the rest of the budget session. They had returned to the house after boycotting the session for one week.
The ruling Congress party legislators from Telangana and all members of Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) are already boycotting the session to press their demand for a bill in parliament to carve out a separate Telangana state.