Police action: Andhra Congress divided over court order

Hyderabad, Feb 19 (IANS) Legislators of the ruling Congress party in Andhra Pradesh stand divided over the state high court order on police action against students of Osmania University protesting for a separate Telangana state.

A day after two legislators from the Andhra region took exception to the court reprimanding the government and police and making certain observations about the state governor, a legislator from Telangana Friday criticised the raising of the issue in the assembly.

Shankar Rao, who represents one of the assembly constituencies in Hyderabad, told the house during zero hour that the action of the legislators was not proper and this had hurt the sentiments of the Telangana people.

Deputy Speaker N. Manohar stopped the member from speaking further and pointed out that Speaker N. Kirankumar Reddy has already reserved his ruling over the issue.

Two Congress legislators, Malladi Vishnu and Mahidhar Reddy, had Thursday raised the issue in the house. They said the court’s remarks against the governor, government and police could send a wrong message to people.

Leader of opposition and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief N. Chandrababu Naidu took exception to the members raising the court directive in the house.

While ordering the government to pull out paramilitary forces from the Osmania University campus earlier this week, the court had severely reprimanded police for beating up students, including girl students and mediapersons.

Justice Narasimha Reddy pulled up the police saying it was lawless and even the chief minister and his cabinet colleagues were helpless. It lambasted police chief Girish Kumar for not respecting his order. The judge also remarked this was happening despite the fact that a renowned former police officer was the governor of the state. He was referring to Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan, former director of the intelligence bureau.

The division bench of the high court Tuesday dismissed the government’s petition challenging the Justice Narasimha Reddy’s order to remove the paramilitary force from the campus.

The single judge bench had again pulled up police Thursday and asked the government why the probe into the incidents not handed over to Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

Though the government had pulled out paramilitary forces from the campus, it filed an appeal in the Supreme Court, seeking a stay on the high court. The Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan, while posting the hearing to Friday, asked the state who permitted the deployment of paramilitary forces on campus. He remarked it was not a good sign.

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