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Nov 12, 2012 at 04:06pm IST

MIM withdraws support to UPA government over temple row

Hyderabad: The Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) on Monday withdrew support to the UPA government in the Centre accusing the Kiran Kumar Reddy government in Andhra Pradesh of high handedness on temple renovation issue at Old City area in Hyderabad. MIM has one MP, Asaduddin Owaisi, from Hyderabad in the UPA. MIM also withdrew support to the Congress government in Andhra Pradesh, where it has seven MLAs.

Speaking to CNN-IBN, MIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi said, "We are disappointed with state government's inaction over several minority issues. We are withdrawing support, ending 14 year relation. We will expose the Congress government in Andhra Pradesh. Jagan Reddy is a friend. Kiran Kumar Reddy was a friend. We will see how 2014 elections plays out."

Meanwhile, an uneasy calm settled over the old city of Hyderabad on Monday, a day after leaders of the MIM protested and were subsequently arrested over a temple controversy. With tension still palpable in the usually busy areas around historic Charminar and in the interior areas, Road Transport Corporation (RTC) suspended all its bus services. RTC officials said 157 services were cancelled as a precautionary measure.

A curfew-like situation prevailed in the usually busy markets around Charminar. All schools and colleges declared a holiday. Police said the situation remained peaceful. No untoward incident was reported overnight.

Police remained on high alert in view of the reported plans by some groups to take out a rally to Bhagyalakshmi Temple abutting Charminar. Armed policemen were seen patrolling the streets in communally sensitive localities. Trouble broke out Sunday after MIM legislators were arrested when they staged a protest over erection of a canopy on the temple structure.

They alleged that the court orders to maintain status quo at the temple were violated. Eight legislators and several other party activists were arrested. The arrests sparked violent protests in some parts of the old city.

Police Commissioner Anurag Sharma Sunday night clarified that the temple committed was allowed to cover the temple structure with tarpaulin sheets after Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) said the structure had the covers as on October 30.

(With additional information from IANS)