Telangana Supporters Cook on Streets in Novel Protest

Telangana agitators turned all the major roads and junctions in the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad into community kitchen and dining centres in an effort to put more pressure on the central government.

The “Vanta Varpu” or “cooking on the roads” programme, organised by the Telangana Joint Action Committee (TJAC) and Telangana Rashtra Samiti went off peacefully and was a success, with hundreds of thousands of people taking part in the day-long feasting on the roads.

The TJAC and other supporters of Telangana had set up the community kitchens at as many as 1,500 sites where more than 500,000 people gathered for lunch.

Apart from the parties, organisations of different professional and social groups and even ordinary families came out with utensils, gas cylinders and stoves to cook for the people.

There was also singing and dancing to revolutionary Telangana songs.

Various locations

The doctors’ joint action committee organised their programme in Secunderabad, while government employees had their kitchen at Gun Park near the state assembly and the electricity department employees organised their programme at Mint Compound.

Telangana Rashtra Samiti president K. Chandrasekhar Rao (KCR), who participated in the programme along with his entire family at different points in the city warned the central government that if it does not accept the peaceful demand, then the situation can get out of hand and a situation like the one in 1969 could arise. In that year, a violent agitation rocked the entire state.

He demanded that the central government bring a Bill in the next session of Parliament and get it passed. “Patience has a limit and the central government should not test the patience of Telangana people any longer,” he said. KCR said that only agitation can force the central government to agree to the demand.

“Our running to Delhi will not solve this problem. It is Delhi which should run to Hyderabad and solve the problem,” he told the Telangana Congress leaders who had to return from Delhi empty-handed.

He said the Telangana Congress leaders should realise that only their resignation en masse will force the central government to act.

Other prominent personalities also took part in the programme at different places. TRS MP and film actor Vijay Shanti took part at Hitec City along with a city legislator from Congress, Vishnuvardhan Reddy, and film star Suman alongside the TRS leader, T. Harish Rao

[Omer Farooq in Gulf News]

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