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Heroin seized at Guj port not intended for Andhra, says police

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The huge consignment of heroin confiscated at Gujarat’s Mundra port was intended to reach Delhi and not Vijayawada, a senior Andhra Pradesh Police official said on Monday.

Vijayawada Police Commissioner B. Sreenivasulu’s clarification came amid reports that a city-based firm is under probe by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) in connection with the drug haul.

The DRI reportedly seized 2,988.22 kg of the banned substance with an estimated street value of Rs 2,000 crore at Mundra Port on Wednesday.

The contraband was mixed with talc stone powder, and packed in two containers.

The consignment originated from Afghanistan, and shipped to Gujarat from Iran’s Bandar Abbas Port. The GST number used for consignment allegedly belong to a company registered in Vijayawada, with its office on Gadiyaramvari Street at Satyanarayanapuram.

The Police Commissioner said on verification with the investigating agencies, it was learnt that Govindaraju Durga Purna Vaishali, a resident of Chennai, had taken GST registration in August 2020 on the address D No 23-14-16, Satyanarayanapuram. Machavaram Sudhakar, a resident of Chennai, is the husband of Vaishali. The building is owned by Vaishali’s mother Govindaraju Taraka.

“It is learnt that Vaishali has taken a import and export license (IEC Code) from Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) for export and import purpose. It is also learnt that both wife and husband (Sudhakar and Vaishali) have been residing in Chennai for the past many years,” he said.

“The smuggled heroin in the guise of talcum powder that landed at Mundra Port is intended to reach Delhi, but not to Vijayawada as alleged in some sections of media. So far no activity except using the Vijayawada house address for obtaining above licenses has come to notice. However, further enquiries are being conducted,” he added.

It was learnt that investigating agencies conducted raids and searched in Ahmedabad, Delhi, and Chennai etc.

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One Party…four factions … What’s the future?

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The TDP is a divided house in its strongest citadel – Vijayawada. Vijayawada urban TDP is suffering intense group fights and these are threatening to hit at the very roots of the party in Vijayawada.

The party is divided into four factions led by MP Kesineni Nani, former MLA Bonda Uma, former MLC Buddha Venkanna and Sheikh Nagul Meera. Each is working at cross purposes. As a result, the party workers are left thoroughly confused. They are worried that the party will lose whatever clout it has if the same trend of infighting continues.

Interestingly, all these four were very friendly and united till 2019. Nani was the MP and he was on very good terms with Bonda Uma. They even roped in Buddha Venkanna. But, after the 2019 elections, Nani began a very vituperative attack on Buddha Venkanna. They fought on not just party forums, but also on social media. Later, even Bonda Uma fell out with Kesineni Nani. Now, Nani is trying to project his daughter Shweta as his political heir. He even projected her as the mayoral candidate for VMC. It is another matter that Shweta won her division, but the party lost badly to the YSRCP.

Now, even Vijayawada One Town leaders like Nagul Meera and Jaleel Khan feel threatened by Swetha’s aggression. With Nani promoting her, they feel she could contest from their domain of the Old City. As of now, no attempt is being made by the party’s top leadership to address these differences. Though Lokesh has tried to patch up the differences, he has not succeeded. The result? The TDP is divided into four factions with no signs of the situation improving.

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Tainted trust member reinstated quietly in Kanakaduga temple

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In God’s name… Rest pay in cash…. this American adage turns out to be cent per cent true in case of the trust board of the famed and historic Kanakadurga temple atop the holy Indrakeeladri. Quietly, the endowments minister is reportedly pulling the strings and is accused of filling the trust board with ‘Yes’ men and ‘yes’ women.

Trust Board’s woman member Varalakshmi, in whose car 283 liquor bottles were found, has now been reinstated on the sly. In fact, the case against her son and her driver are still pending and the member herself had admitted that the car did belong to her. In fact, she had resigned owing moral responsibility for the incident. The incident had occurred near Jaggaiahpet of Krishna district. Despite all this, she had quietly written a letter to the Trust Board chairperson for reinstatement, which was accepted pronto and she was immediately made a member of the trust board again.

There are allegations that she was brought back under pressure by Endowments Minister Vellampalli Srinivas. Interestingly, the minister represents Vijayawada West constituency and the temple falls under this constituency. There are also allegations that the minister himself had sent a letter of recommendation in support of the tainted former member.

This is in stark contrast to the way the erstwhile TDP regime had dealt with allegations of far too less serious nature. During the TDP regime, a woman member of the trust board was accused of stealing the sarees offered to the deity. Though the CCTV footage evidence was inconclusive, the then government acted sternly and suspended her from the trust board.

Unfortunately, two of the members of the Trust Board are facing cases. One member is accused of CM relief fund embezzlement. Yet, no action has been taken so far on them.

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YCP variety campaign on Vijayawada as Capital

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All eyes are now on the election to Vijayawada Municipal Corporation. The YCP Ministers and MLAs are under heavy pressure from CM Jagan to win this under any circumstances. Against these odds, the ruling party leaders brought forth a novel campaign in Vijayawada polls to counter the TDP attack on Capital shifting from the vicinity of the city of victory.

The YCP Ministers are now saying that Chandrababu Naidu should have selected Vijayawada as the Capital City. Had Naidu done that during his regime, the AP Capital City would have been ready by now with all the necessary infrastructure.

Minister Perni Nani has asked the TDP chief what he has achieved in Amaravati except that some soil and water were brought from different places. Naidu has done only lip service and shown impressive graphics while the real Capital City remained an illusion.

Obviously, the YCP leaders are coming out with all sorts of indefensible and unjustifiable arguments in their rush to grab the attention of the Vijayawada voters. Analysts say that instead of making allegations against the TDP, the ruling party should as well correct Naidu’s mistake if they were really committed to Vijayawada city people. Doubtless to say, the city is centrally located. As Nani said, it would turn into an excellent capital if all facilities are provided.

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Jagan desperate steps to win Vijayawada mayor

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KCR and Asaduddin Owaisi were long known for their overt and covert collaboration right from the separate Telangana agitation. Both of them supported Jagan Reddy in the 2019 elections in different ways. Owaisi’s MIM was contesting the elections in different States in the Country to split the pro-Congress vote bank. But it did not enter AP since that would help to avoid a split in the pro-Jagan Reddy vote bank.

All voters of the Congress shifted en mass to the YCP since 2014 in AP. But now in the ongoing municipal elections, the MIM is now contesting in a very limited seats in AP. It is contesting in two corporator seats in the Vijayawada Municipal Corporation. Obviously, the MIM is planning to split the anti-Jagan Reddy vote bank.

Undeniably, there are strong feelings across all sections in Vijayawada against Jagan Reddy’s plans to shift Executive Capital from the vicinity of their city to Vizag. However, some groups are still with the YCP out of political considerations. It has become prestigious for the Chief Minister to win the Vijayawada Mayor post in order to justify his Capital shifting plans.

However, the YCP plans to win unanimous results in some seats in VMC have failed. With this, the ruling party is using all tactics available in order to save its face in this high stakes battle.

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Durga Temple Board Member resigns: Liquor smuggling

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Vara Lakshmi, YSRCP leader, has resigned as there member of the governing body of Kanaka Durga Temple following a case of illegal liquor smuggling. The special forces have caught and seized large quantities of liquor bottles from her car in Jaggayyapeta area. The direct involvement of the ruling party leader created a sensation all over the State.

A case has been filed against Surya Prakash Gupta. Her car driver Siva has been arrested. The YSRCP Vijayawada leaders have announced resignation of Vara Lakshmi saying that it was done in order to respect the sentiments of the devotees of Kanaka Durga.

Interestingly, Vara Lakshmi has not sent her resignation letter to the temple board chairman or the executive officer. She sent this letter to YCP MLA Samineni Udaya Bhanu.

For quite some time, there were allegations that the ruling YSRCP leaders were making fast money by taking advantage of the high rates of liquor and also non availability of most popular liquor brands in Andhra Pradesh. They were charged with bringing large quantities of liquor from neighbouring states to sell illegally in connivance with the local officials here in AP.

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Robbery of silver lions confirmed but no police case yet

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The endowment officials have finally concluded after a day that 3 silver lions were stolen from the Kanaka Durga temple in Vijayawada. Immediately, this should have been complained to the city police to launch investigation. But, as of now, an internal inquiry was begun in the endowments department. The regional joint commissioner and executive officer of the Penuganchiprolu temple will enquire and submit a report.

Even within the Durga temple, the officials launched an internal inquiry to find out when the robbery took place. The sole work of these departmental enquiries was to determine the day and time of robbery of lions. On the day of robbery yesterday, the executive officer said that lions might have been in a locker somewhere. Now, it’s being confirmed that the robbery has been committed and the lions are gone for good.

Questions are being raised now why no police inquiry is launched till now. Are there CCTV cameras there? Concerns are being expressed that no evidence is being available in temple incidents just like in Antarvedi chariot burning.

The Durga temple incident has created a bigger controversy. Even BJP AP President Somu Veerraju visited the spot and demanded immediate nabbing of the robbers.

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Covid scare atop Indrakeeladri, 15 +ve and 3 dead

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The Coronavirus threat is increasing menacingly in Vijayawada city limits. The virus infections triggered a scare among the devotees about the Indrakeeladri Kanaka Durga Temple. The temple executive officer has become infected. Till now, nearly 15 staff have tested positive atop the hill temple while three succumbed to the disease. The rise in infections caused a deep fall in the devotees at the temple.

As a result of the rising infections, the temple staff have been bringing pressure on the officials for closing down the temple for darshans till the disease subsides and a vaccine becomes available. On the other hand, the temple committee is unable to take a final decision in view of the financial constraints and the need for getting funds for meeting maintenance costs. The situation at most of the temples is more or less the same. After darshans are allowed amid virus preventive measures, infections increased among the staff and caused a big crisis.

Following the deepening crisis, the Raj Bhavan has decided to cancel the At Home meeting of the Governor which was scheduled for today as part of the Independence Day celebrations. The meeting was traditionally conducted to facilitate the Governor to meet with leaders, officials and others and exchange pleasantries.

The political leaders were also taking part in the I-Day celebrations on online platforms. In view of the physical distance restrictions, the parties and the government departments were taking additional care to stay safe from infections.

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11 die in Covid centre fire at Vijayawada Swarna palace

Over eleven patients died so far in the huge fire at the Covid centre being run at the Swarna Palace Hotel in Vijayawada. The fire broke out due to a short circuit in the early hours of Sunday. There were nearly 40 patients and 10 medical staff at the time of the mishap. The death toll is expected to rise further. This Covid centre is being run by Ramesh Hospital management. Many hotels in the city were converted into Coronavirus centres and handed over to different hospitals.

Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy, Opposition leader Chandrababu Naidu, Home Minister Mekathoti Sucharita and other leaders expressed deep shock at the death of patients. Reports came out that the Covid centre staff gave wrong reports to the government that only 5 patients were taking treatment at Swarna Palace quarantine centre.

Mr. Naidu and former Minister Nara Lokesh demanded that the best medical care be provided to the injured persons. They demanded immediate compensation to the bereaved families who lost their dear ones in the fire.

Two of the eleven deceased persons were women. The injured persons were shifted to other hospitals in over 15 ambulances. Some patients even jumped from the top floors of the building after flames engulfed their rooms.

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Political twist to Bezawada gang war murder: Corporator ticket

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Tejaswini, wife of murdered Thota Sandeep, is making sensational comments on her husband’s death. She told the media that Sandeep’s murder has nothing to do with the apartment or real estate disputes. Sandeep became targetted only after he started trying to contest the corporator elections on the Telugu Desam Party ticket.
Tejaswini’s allegation is that political rivals used Manikanta alias Pandu as a pawn to eliminate Sandeep. She said that till recently, both Pandu used to follow Sandeep and accompany him to many places. But since a few days before the murder, Pandu began picking up heated arguments and even threatening Sandeep. Actually, Sandeep went to settle the issue but the rival gang came armed with chilli powder and launched their murderous attack in a surprise manner.

The latest allegations by Tejaswini have raised political temperatures in the city which was once a hotbed of gang wars and caste wars. The police have also faced critical remarks that they have not acted in time to nab the accused or to prevent the gang war that left one dead and many injured. There are also reports that the corporator ticket was offered to Tejaswini at one stage in the woman’s quota.

All said and done, Sandeep’s murder has now cast a shodow on the municipal corporation elections in Vijayawada.

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Chandrababu Naidu detained amid high drama in Vijayawada

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Amid high drama, police detained former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu and other TDP leaders when they were trying to embark on a ‘bus yatra’ to Amaravati on Wednesday night.

The police later let off the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) President and other leaders at his house at Undavalli in Amaravati.

Tension prevailed near Vedika Kalyana Mandapam when Naidu, Communist Party of India (CPI) state Secretary K. Ramakrishna and other TDP leaders were leaving on a ‘bus yatra’ as part of the continuing protest by Amaravati farmers over the YSRCP government’s three capitals proposal.

Police stopped the Leader of Opposition and others, leading to a heated debate between the two sides. Protesting against the police behavior, Naidu and others squatted on the road at Benz Circle.

Naidu condemned the high-handed behavior of police and demanded that they be allowed to undertake the ‘bus yatra’. The protestors raised slogans against Chief Minister Y. S. Jagan Mohan Reddy and the police.

The protest led to huge traffic jam at the busy city centre. Amid a tense situation, the police forcibly lifted the protesting leaders and carried them to waiting police vehicles. They were later dropped at Naidu’s residence.

Naidu’s son Nara Lokes, former ministers Atchan Naidu, Devineni Uma and TDP MLAs were also among those detained.

Meanwhile, Home Minister Mekathoti Sucharitha slammed Naidu for the “drama” and said that he is turning out to be an anti-social element after losing power. She blamed him for the chaotic situation in Krisnna and Guntur districts.

“He is just trying to save the lands of his benamis in the capital region by creating a law and order problem in the region,” she said.

The minister said under the three capital proposal the legislative capital will remain in Amaravati and hence there was no need for any protest over the issue.

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Vijayawada and Siddipet win Cleanest city awards

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Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs announced Swachh Survekshan Awards 2018 in which Vijayawada and Siddipet won India’s Cleanest City awards. Vijayawada has been awarded India’s Cleanest City award in the category of population over 10 lakhs. Siddipet has been announced as the cleanest city in the South Zone that falls under the category of population less than one lakh. The garbage collection vehicles in Siddipet have been equipped with GPS / RFID and the garbage is collected on regular basis across the town.

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First Aid saved me – Eluru MP Maganti Babu

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Eluru MP Maganti Babu has been discharged from a private hospital in Vijayawada. He was initially admitted in a local private hospital in Eluru Friday afternoon, after suffering a mild heart attack. Later he was transferred to another private hospital in Vijayawada for better medical care.

Talking to the reporters, Maganti Babu said, ‘it is one of the situations where we don’t expect ourselves to be in. No doctors were available when I had the heart attack. Tele-medicine has saved in that golden hour.

While I was being transferred from Eluru to Vijayawada,Chief Cardiologist Dr Ramesh was available on the phone. It was under his supervision, the first aid has been performed. After going through the reports (of my ECG) sent over the phone, Dr Ramesh has been continuously in touch with the Ambulance crew guiding them through the medical process. Thanks to tele medicine, and timely first aid, I survived’, said Maganti Babu.

The MP is currently resting in his residence in Eluru, and few politicians have visited him.

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Pawan Kalyan addresses NRIs in Vijayawada

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Pawan Kalyan addressed the NRI Wing of Janasena Party. With last evening’s fiery speech in Guntur, all eyes are on the NR meeting. Speaking to NRIs (Non-Resident Indians), Pawan Kalyan called for their support and backing for the state of Andhra Pradesh and Janasena party too.
He said, ‘we are not looking NRIs as a fundraising option or a monetary bank. Instead, we request you to support the state, given your wide connections in the US. I only have very limited connections in the US’.

It is understood that Pawan Kalyan pledged the NRIs to take part in active politics of Telugu states. ‘Pawan Kalyan asked whether the NRIs had any doubts regarding his approach or party’s stance on various issues raised at the meeting yesterday. NRIs came from different countries and attended the meeting voluntarily. Valuing and respecting their presence, Pawan Kalyan met them. At the same time, he wanted them to be the ambassadors of Janasena internationally, and carry forward welfare programs’, said a party source.

Over 40 NRIs have reportedly attended the Janasena Formation Day party meeting last evening in Guntur.

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Janasena office land: Disputes, statements and politics

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Janasena office land Vijayawada

Janasena Chief Pawan was almost ready to start his party office in 3 acre land in Chinnakaakani (Mangalagiri mandal). But suddenly a Muslim family popped up and raised concerns that this land belongs to them and questioned how Pawan can make a lease agreement on this land with someone else. With this sudden incident, Pawan’s plans of starting this party office soon seems to got messed up.

Janasena took a land for 3 year lease from a person named Yarlagadda Sambasivrao and entered into a lease agreement accordingly. But a Muslim family came in front of media claiming that the land actually belongs to them. They revealed that the land has been in court dispute since 1981. In fact, in 1997, Guntur court ruled in favor of them (Muslim family) but Yarlagadda approached the high court, which ordered for status quo on the land. The family asks how Yarlagadda can give the land on lease to Pawan. They asked Pawan to constitute a committee to decide to whom the land belongs to.

Janasana chief Pawan Kalyan responded immediately on this controversy saying, this issue came to his notice. Pawan said Janasena gave a press note some days back regarding this land lease agreement but no one brought any objections to his notice. Moreover, he was in Vijayawada on 8th and 9th of December but none came to him with any objection on this land. Not even when he visited the land recently nobody raised any concerns or objections. He added, now suddenly these people are revealing all these things in the presence of a politician which is actually creating doubts if there is any political conspiracy. But Pawan said he and his party has the courage and strength to fight such political conspiracies. But in case if it is genuinely disputed land, he assured he will stay away from the land. He also told they just took the land for 3 year lease and so they don’t have any malicious intentions on this land.

We have to wait and see if there is any political conspiracy and how Janasena deals this issue!!!

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Maestro Ilaiyaraaja Live in Vijayawada

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Ilaiyaraaja Live in Vijayawada

The Music Maestro Ilaiyaraaja needs no introduction to the world of Indian Film Music. The innovations and amazing changes he brought in film composing can never be forgotten. After his native language Tamil, it was Telugu in which Ilaiyaraaja has done maximum songs and earned unique fan following for the distinguished sound, experimentation in music and of course- chartbuster songs throughout 80s decade and 90s as well.

Temple Bell Events has organized Maestro Ilaiyaraaja concert in Hyderabad during November and earned overwhelming response from the audience. With the same zeal and enthusiasm, the young event management team is organizing Ilaiyaraaja’s show for the first time ever in Vijayawada, the commercial hub of the sunrise state Andhra Pradesh. This is indeed a great news for all Andhra Pradesh natives to visit and experience the musical extravaganza in live!

The event is scheduled on Jan 27th 2018 and Ilaiyaraaja will be arriving with his live orchestra to enthrall the audience of Vijayawada. The tickets are available on sale at https://www.meraevents.com/

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Boat accident – YSRCP ruckus impedes rescue operations

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It is known news that the boat carrying 38 tourists capsized at Ferry Ghat in Vijayawada leading to death of several people. Still some people are missing. The incident that happened yesterday evening left entire state in a tragic mood as the tourists dying in this most unfortunate incident. Initially the local people tried to rescue some of them but later NDRF reached the spot and was part of rescue operations.

However, the Bhavani island was in chaos and tensions as the political leaders from YSRC party, Partha Saradhi and Jogi Ramesh, reached the spot and staged a protest. The leaders from the opposition alleged that the government has failed in providing safety and should be held responsible for the accident.

However, the police who were busy with the rescue operations struggled to handle these protests at that point of time. City police commissioner Gautam Sawang reached the spot and immediately deployed more forces to aid the rescue operations. Sawang said “These protestors (YCP members) are obstructing rescue operations for us, we are unable to move from one location to another freely” . He slammed the protesters of being insensitive.

But YSRCP leaders alleged that police has reached the location very late and until then it was the local people who were trying to rescue the missing people and once police reached the spot, they beaten and pushed away those locals who were doing rescue operations. Soon the location was filled with slogans by cadre who accompanied YSRCP leaders. The accident spot was filled with mourning’s on one side and these protests on other side leaving the location in full chaos.

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Kancha Ilaiah placed under house arrest in Hyderabad

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Police placed Dalit writer and social activist Kancha Ilaiah under house arrest here on Saturday to stop him from leaving for Vijayawada to address a public meeting.

Policemen were deployed outside his house in Tarnaka. A team from Andhra Pradesh has conveyed to him that he will be arrested if he steps out of the house.

A large number of Ilaiah’s supporters gathered outside his house. One of the supporters said they were determined to leave for Vijayawada.

The police team on Friday served notice on the Dalit thinker, informing that there is no permission for the public meeting in Vijayawada as prohibitory orders were in force in the city.

Some Dalit and backward classes organisations had planned to organise to express solidarity with Ilaiah, facing threats from various groups from Arya Vysya community.

The Hyderabad High Court on Friday had refused to give directions to Andhra Pradesh Police not to grant permission to Ilaiah to conduct a meeting in Vijayawada. The court was hearing a petition filed by Arya Vysya Sangham.

Arya Vysya-Brahmana Aikya Vedika or the joint committee of Arya Vysya and Brahmin communities had threatened severe consequences if Ilaiah was allowed to visit Vijayawada and hold the meeting.

The joint committee had also planned to organise a meeting but dropped its plans after police imposed orders banning meetings and rallies in the city.

Ilaiah alleged that the governments of both Andhra Pradesh and Telangana were trying to suppress freedom of expression.

The writer has been facing protests from the Arya Vysya groups for describing the trading community as social smugglers in his Telugu book “Samaajika smugglerlu komatollu”.

Arya Vysya communities are seeking a ban on the book and the arrest of the writer for hurting their sentiments.

The Supreme Court on October 15 refused to ban the book.

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Kancha Ilaiah denied permission to address Vijayawada meeting

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The Andhra Pradesh Police on Friday served notice on writer and social activist Kancha Ilaiah, asking him not to visit Vijayawada on Saturday to address a public meeting.

Police officials from Vijayawada visited Ilaiah’s house in Tarnaka here and told him there is no permission for any meeting or rally in the city as this could create law and order problems.

The writer was told prohibitory orders have already been imposed in the city.

Arya Vysya-Brahmana Aikya Vedika or the joint committee of Arya Vysya and Brahmin communities had threatened severe consequences if Ilaiah was allowed to visit the city and hold the meeting.

Aikya Vedika had also planned to hold a meeting to counter the one proposed to be organised by groups backing Ilaiah.

However, it called off the meeting after an assurance by the police that the writer would not be allowed to address the meeting.

Reacting sharply to the notice served on him, Ilaiah alleged that the Andhra Pradesh government is resorting to undemocratic methods.

He said the public meeting was planned by groups from scheduled castes, scheduled tribes and backward classes to demand reservation in the private sector.

The Dalit thinker alleged that there is a grave threat to free speech and expression in Andhra Pradesh.

He has been facing protests from the Arya Vysya community for describing them as social smugglers in his Telugu book ‘Samaajika smugglerlu komatollu’.

Arya Vysya communities are seeking a ban on the book and the arrest of the writer for hurting their sentiments.

The Supreme Court on October 15 refused to ban the book.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.

MoU of Vijayawada Metro Rail cancelled

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The Memorandum of understanding (MoU) between Amaravati Metro Rail Corporation (AMRC) and Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) has been cancelled, following the differences emerged after the state failed to secure permissions from the Centre for Vijayawada Metro Project.

AMRC agreed to pay only the amount spent so far as the works have not progressed, even though DMRC requested to pay Rs 75 core capital expenditure; reported Deccan Chronicle.

DMRC made the first move for Vijayawada Metro Project and entered into MoU without approvals from Central government. It called tenders twice but had to cancel it. Differences cropped up between officials of DMRC and AMRC. AMRC is of the view that had the tenders not been cancelled, project works would have started.

Union Government asked the State to go ahead with Light Metro project. Consequently, tenders have been called for on DPRs without the consulting DMRC which irked the officials.

The DMRC reportedly penned a letter to cancel the MoU and the AMRC supported it.

Telugu360 is always open for the best and bright journalists. If you are interested in full-time or freelance, email us at Krishna@telugu360.com.

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