Former Andhra Pradesh CM and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief N Chandrababu Naidu and his son N Lokesh have been placed under house arrest to prevent them from participating in a protest in against alleged political violence by the YSRCP government, news agency ANI reported.
Besides Naidu and Lokesh, several TDP leaders, including MLAs were also taken into custody by the police on Wednesday morning. ANI reported that while former TDP minister Bhuma Akhila Priya was taken into preventive detention by police at Novotel hotel, former MLA Tangirala Sowmya was put under house arrest at Nandigama town. Sowmya was sitting on a protest outside her residence along with other TDP leaders as a part of the party’s 'Chalo Atmakur' rally against YSRCP government.
ANI said that MLC YVB Rajendra Prasad has also been put under house arrest in Vuyyuru of Krishna district. It said that Chandrababu Naidu was not allowed to interact with media and he remains under preventive custody at his residence.
Naidu’s son Lokesh was stopped from participating in protests near his home in Undavalli. He argued with the police that there was no ban on gathering in Vijayawada and that they should not be stopped from protesting. "It is my fundamental right to protest," Lokesh said.
"This is dictatorship, we are being stopped in an undemocratic way. TDP leaders and workers are being harassed. YSRCP MLAs are openly threatening us, saying police is with them. The ruling party is trying to strangulate our party across Andhra Pradesh. We were doing our activities in a democratic manner but our entire leadership was put under house arrest. This is the murder of democracy," he told ANI.
The TDP leaders were put under preventive custody in view of the party’s 'Chalo Atmakur' rally today which has been called to expose alleged political violence by YSRCP government.
Meanwhile, the TDP has announced that Naidu will sit om a day-long fast inside his residence at Undavalli to protest against the police action.
In Guntur, some leaders of the ruling YSR Congress were also detained as they too gave a call for a similar programme to counter the TDP.