Suspected Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) activists vandalised the houses of former union minister Renuka Chowdhary and Congress leader Jalagam Venkat Rao on the outskirts of Khammam town in Andhra Pradesh, around 200 km east of Hyderabad, early on Wednesday.
The activists were protesting against the arrest of their leader K. Chandrasekhar Rao.
The police arrested the TRS chief before he could undertake a fast unto death demanding a separate Telangana state.
This is the first such action against Congress leaders in Telangana by Rao’s supporters, which indicates hardening of TRS’ stand.
The police said the attackers tried to break open the doors of Chowdhary’s house, which also doubles up as her office. Unable to do that, they allegedly poured kerosene on one of the windows and set it afire.
They also reportedly raised slogans against her, saying she was anti-Telangana, before leaving the scene.
“Before the fire could spread, Chowdhary’s neighbours doused it by throwing buckets of water,” said Gudugu Ravi, one of her confidants.
“Damage to property was minimum.” Chowdhary, who was not in town at the time of the incident, described it as handiwork of anti-social elements.