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Opposition protest over 'Dharna Chowk' in Hyderabad turns violent

IANS  |  Hyderabad 

Six persons were injured as the protest by opposition parties over the shifting of 'Dharna Chowk', a popular venue for staging protests, turned violent on Monday.

The activists of the opposition parties clashed with another group of protestors demanding shifting of 'Dharna Chowk' from Indira Park in the heart of the city.

All opposition parties had supported the march to Indira Park called by Telangana Joint Action Committee (TJAC) to demand the government to withdraw its move to shift 'Dharna Chowk' to city outskirts.

However, even before they could reach Indira Park, another groups said to be residents of areas surrounding the park and morning walkers started a 'sit-in' supporting the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) government's stand.

Claiming that the protests at 'Dharna Chowk' was causing them inconvenience to them all through the year, the protestors including women demanded that it be shifted to some other place.

They were holding placards with slogans "Give our children a peaceful environment" and "Don't take away our freedom to move freely".

Opposition activists, most of them from Communist Party of India-Maoist, threw away the chairs and tried to remove the tent set up by the group, which resisted the attempts. Police baton charged the opposition protestors to bring the situation under control.

The opposition parties alleged that the government hatched a conspiracy to foil their protest.

TJAC chairman M. Kodandaram said policemen in civil dress attacked the opposition activists.

Main opposition Congress, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Telugu Desam Party (TDP), Communist Party of India (CPI) and Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) and mass organisations have been running a campaign for over a month to oppose shifting of 'Dharna Chowk'. They had termed the government's move as an attempt to suppress the voice of dissent.

Kodandaram along with leaders of various parties and revolutionary balladeer Gaddar called on the injured at government-run Gandhi Hospital.

They claimed that their protest was successful. They threaten to intensify the agitation, if the government went ahead with its move.

'Dharna Chowk' has been the venue of thousands of protests by political parties, people's organisations, students' groups, employees' unions and others for over two decades.

Chief Minister Chandrasekhar Rao had last month defended the police move to shift 'Dharna Chowk' to the city outskirts saying that some parties were deliberately creating problems in the name of protests.

--IANS

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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