by IANS | Mon, Dec 26, 2022, 12:58 PM
Vijayawada, Dec 26 (IANS) Tension prevailed in Gudivada town in Andhra Pradesh's Krishna district on Monday as ruling YSRCP and opposition TDP have planned separate programmes to observe the death anniversary of former Congress MLA Vangaveeti Mohan Ranga Rao.
Police have imposed prohibitory orders under section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code banning meetings and rallies. Additional police forces were deployed in the town to prevent any untoward incident.
The situation in the town has been tense since Sunday night when workers of YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) clashed.
The TDP functionaries alleged that YSRCP leader Merugumala Kali made a phone call to former TDP MLA Ravi Venkateswara Rao and threatened to kill him if he organised a programme to mark the 24th death anniversary of Ranga. On learning about this, TDP men went to the residence of the ruling party leader.
Followers of former minister and YSRCP MLA Kodali Nani and TDP leader Ravi raised slogans against each other. There was a heated argument between the two groups. Police intervened to bring the situation under control.
The opposition party leaders alleged that the police did not take action against the YSRCP men who resorted to threats and violence.
Police erected barricades and deployed personnel around the TDP office to prevent any gathering. The TDP leaders offered tributes to Ranga at his statue at AGK School in the town.
On the other side, the YSRCP men were gathering at another place and threatening to disrupt the programme. The ruling party leaders say that TDP has no right to organise the death anniversary programme of Ranga.
Meanwhile, leaders of the Jana Sena Party (JSP) also offered tributes to Ranga by garlanding his statue.
Ranga, a leader of Congress party and belonging to the Kapu community, was murdered in 1988 when he was on hunger strike, sparking unprecedented violence in Vijayawada and other parts of Krishna district as well as neighbouring districts. More than 40 people were killed and property worth over Rs 100 crore was damaged.
The violence abated after then Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N.T. Rama Rao made his TDP legislator Devineni 'Nehru' Rajasekhar surrender. The then Home Minister Kodela Sivaprasada Rao also had to resign.
In 2016, controversial filmmaker Ramgopal Verma had made a movie 'Vangaveeti' based on a feud between the families of Vangaveeti and Nehru belonging to two dominant castes and rival political parties.
Ranga's son Vangaveeti Radhakrishna had joined the YSRCP in 2012, but quit the party in 2019 after he was denied ticket from Vijayawada Central Assembly constituency. He later joined the TDP.