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Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Mob rains eggs, stones on P Shankar Rao

HYDERABAD: Just as social activist Anna Hazare has his detractors, 'Andhra's Anna Hazare' P Shankar Rao too has them, albeit slightly more disposed to violence. The handlooms and textiles minister was rained with eggs, tomatoes and stones when he went on Tuesday to the NTR Nagar locality to console the family of a local who is fighting against land encroachment allegedly supported by home minister Sabitha Indra Reddy and her son Karthik Reddy. The nearly 300strong mob, allegedly all supporters of the home minister, shouted that Shankar Rao himself was a land grabber.Around 12.30 p.m., Shankar Rao reached the slum to console the family of Jahangeer Ali, a local leader and historysheeter, who was fighting against some local Congress leaders who were trying to vacate the slum and grab the land. The local leaders are said to have the support of the home minister and her son. Jahangeer had recently fallen ill and was admitted to a hospital and the minister had gone to console his family. But the minister's convoy was greeted with boos and accusations of land grabbing. Even as police tried to make way for Shankar Rao's vehicle, the mob attacked the vehicle with eggs and tomatoes. The minister was also hit by couple of eggs on the head and hand but he went into the house nevertheless and stayed for 20 minutes while the police outside caned and dispersed the mob. After a smooth exit from the area, Shankar Rao spoke to the media about the incident at the Secretariat. But soon after he was shifted to the Nizams Institute of Medical Sciences, complaining of low blood pressure. He underwent a medical checkup and doctors proclaimed his condition as normal.It was alleged that the police did little to control the attackers initially. It was also alleged that though the cops had got wind of the plan to attack the minister, very few policemen were posted in the locality. "I had already informed the local police about my visit, but they did not make proper arrangements, conniving with the goondas and the home minister," the minister alleged. Cyberabad police officials, however, said that adequate bandobust was made for the visit. But an angry Shankar Rao demanded that chief minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy remove Sabitha Reddy from the Cabinet and demanded a CBI enquiry into her assets. He also said he would give a list of the home minister's illegal properties to the Congress party high command. Meanwhile, police registered cases against two rival groups of NTR Nagar.


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