39 BJP workers arrested for attacking TRS MLA's house in Telangana’s Warrangal
BJP workers had attacked the residence of TRS MLA Challa Dharma Reddy after he alleged that BJP leaders were collecting huge funds in the name of construction of Ram Mandir at Ayodhya without showing any accounts and were swindling the money.
Police in Telangana’s Warrangal arrested 39 Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers on Monday for allegedly attacking the residence of Telangana Rashtra Samithi lawmaker Challa Dharma Reddy on Sunday evening.
The police produced them in a local court which sent them to 14-day judicial custody. They were shifted to Warangal central jail in the afternoon. Another 14 BJP workers who were also allegedly involved in the attack on the MLA’s residence are absconding, the police said.
The BJP workers led by the party’s Warangal (urban) district unit president Rao Padma attacked Reddy’s residence at Hunter Road in Hanamkonda, in protest against the latter’s comments alleging that the BJP leaders were collecting huge funds in the name of construction of the Ram temple at Ayodhya without showing any accounts and were swindling the money.
The BJP workers pelted stones and eggs at the MLA’s residence and damaged window panes, flower pots and other properties on the premises. The police rushed to the spot and prevented the BJP workers from barging inside. They took the mob into custody and shifted them to Subedari police station.
The ruling TRS retaliated and attacked the BJP party office. TRS workers pelted stones at the office and pulled down flex boards and banners. They also pelted stones on the vehicles of the local BJP leaders, before they were dispersed by the police. Later in the night, a large number of TRS workers also attacked the houses of BJP district unit vice-president K Ranjith and BJYM leader Apurupa Sayee.
On Monday, the local unit of the TRS gave a call for shutdown of Parkal town in protest against the attack on the MLA’s residence. They blocked the roads by burning tyres and squatted to stage a dharna, bringing the traffic to a grinding halt for several hours.
TRS working president K T Rama Rao, in a late-night statement, condemned the attack of the BJP workers on the MLA’s residence. “The BJP should remember that the TRS was born out of a political movement to achieve separate statehood to Telangana. If the BJP wants to resort to such violence, they must remember that TRS too has the power, strength and the force to protect its cadre,” he said.
BJP legislator M Raghunandan Rao accused KTR of instigating the TRS cadres to attack the offices and residences of BJP leaders. “He is not going to achieve anything by engineering attacks on the political rivals. If the BJP cadres retaliate, the state will be in flames,” he warned.
Rao said mobilising funds for the Ram temple was not like collecting party funds. “The people were voluntarily coming forward to donate funds for the construction of Ram temple at Ayodhya,” he said.