The government services in all nine districts of coastal Andhra and four districts of Rayalaseema, collectively known as Seemandhra, remained crippled. For the second day, over 12,000 buses of state-owned Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) remained off the roads.
Over four lakh employees in Seemandhra have struck work, demanding resignations of all elected representatives from the two regions to mount pressure on the centre to reverse its decision to bifurcate the state.
The normal life came to a standstill with the educational institutions, shops and business establishments remained shut in several parts of the two regions. Protests by political activists, students, lawyers, employees, workers, women and other sections of society were continuing for the 15th day in a row.
The Congress party has ruled out going back on the decision to carve out separate Telangana state but asked party leaders, employees and others to make representations to four-member committee led by Defence Minister A.K. Antony. The panel will address issues including the status of Hyderabad raised by various sections.
The Seemandhra employees in the state secretariat and other government offices in Hyderabad are also participating in the strike. The employees at the secretariat staged a protest outside the building, where their leaders held a meeting with a group of ministers.
Andhra Pradesh Non-Gazetted Officers (APNGOs) Association P. Ashok Babu told reporters after the meeting that the strike would continue. They, however, agreed to participate in Independence Day celebrations even while continuing their protest for united Andhra Pradesh. He said future course of action would be announced at a meeting in Guntur Aug 16.
Meanwhile, APSRTC resumed some bus services to Tirumala Venkateswara temple in Tirupati. The striking employees partially restored some services to Tirumala Hills for the convenience of the pilgrims. This followed talks held with them by the officials of Tirumala Tirupati Devasthnanam (TTD), which manages the affairs of the famous temple.
For the first time in 38 years that all bus services between Tirupati and Tirumala were suspended Tuesday.
--IANS (Posted on 14-08-2013)