Hyderabad: In a midnight crackdown, Hyderabad police forcibly shifted fasting leaders of the main opposition Telugu Desam Party (TDP) to a state-run hospital after their condition deteriorated. Policemen lifted 29 TDP legislators into waiting vehicles and shifted them to Nizam's Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS), where they were forcibly given medical aid.
A police team arrived at the Old MLA Quarters shortly after midnight and shifted the fasting leaders. Police arrested some TDP activists who tried to resist attempts to evict the leaders.
Deputy Commissioner of Police Kamalahasan Reddy told reporters that such action was taken on directions from assembly speaker N Manohar. The TDP leaders were on fast for the last four days, demanding that the state government rollback the Fuel Surcharge Adjustment (FSA) imposed on electricity consumers, withdraw the proposed hike in tariff and take measures to tide over the serious electricity crisis.
At NIMS, the fasting leaders, especially women, whose condition deteriorated, were forcibly given saline and other medication. TDP leader M Narasimhulu said they would continue the fast even in the hospital. Condemning the police action, he said the party would stage protest demonstrations across the state Saturday.
Another legislator D Narendra said that except the women, other leaders were refusing to take medical treatment. He said the party would soon chalk out a strategy to intensify the agitation.
TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu's wife Bhuvaneswari called on the TDP leaders at NIMS on Saturday. She made enquiries of doctors about the health status of the legislators.
The TDP leaders had gone on fast March 26, soon after the police forcibly shifted to hospital the leaders of the Left parties who were on fast since March 23 over the same issue. The Left parties have called for statewide shutdown on April 9 to press their demands. The TDP has declared that it supports the shutdown call.