Tension prevailed for a while after TDP activists blocked the Chittoor-Puttur road at Sherman High School Junction on Monday, in protest against their party president N. Chandrababu Naidu being detained at Renigunta airport.
The TDP chief was scheduled to participate in a dharna at Gandhi Bomma Centre to condemn the alleged attacks on his party workers by the YSR Congress Party cadre in connection with the municipal polls. The police effected the house-arrest of key TDP functionaries such as P. Nani, former Minister N. Amarnatha Reddy, and MLC B.N. Rajasimhulu in Chittoor, Puttur, Madanapalle and Palamaner revenue divisions.
Police deny permission
The police denied permission for the protest at the busy Gandhi Bomma Centre and deployed personnel at the proposed venue. As the stalemate continued, the information about Mr. Naidu’s detention at Renigunta airport angered the TDP activists camping at the party office here.
The cadres took out a rally to the Sherman School point and squatted on the road, leading to traffic congestion. The police cleared the traffic after holding talks with the local leaders.
Meanwhile, addressing the media here, Chittoor Superintendent of Police S. Senthil Kumar said that permission to the TDP’s proposed protest was denied for the reasons that the venue (Gandhi Bomma Centre) was in the heart of the city, and it would lead to traffic congestion.
Model code of conduct
“With the municipal elections are around the corner, the protest is seen as a potential factor for creating of law and order problem. Without permission from the State Election Commission (SEC), holding any programme would amount to violation of the model code of conduct,” the SP said, adding that the police had asked the TDP leaders to change their venue so that the permission could be given, but they did not agree.