HYDERABAD: A city bus was set ablaze near the Doordarshan Kendra at Ramantapur here on Sunday by suspected Osmania University Joint Action Committee (OUJAC) activists in protest against the desecration of Ambedkar statues. The bus driver and a passenger were attacked when they resisted their attempt to set the bus ablaze.
Around 7 pm, a group of youngsters claiming themselves to be OUJAC activists, armed with sticks, intercepted the RTC bus plying on Route 113E from ESI Hospital to Uppal near the Ramanthapur TV station and damaged its front windowpanes. They then entered the bus, asked the passengers to get down, doused the seats with kerosene and set them on fire.
A passenger, Anwar, who tried to thwart the miscreants’ attempt to torch the bus was thrashed. The driver, Sudhakar, was also attacked. The activists said the burning of the bus was retaliation to the desecration of Ambedkar statues in the state. They also asked the people to make Monday’s bandh a success. Police said the bus seats had been burnt partially before fire-tenders extinguished the fire. Cases under Sections 307 (attempt to murder), 435 (mischief by fire) and various sections of Prevention of Damage to Public Property (PDPP) and Criminal Law (Amendment) Acts were registered against unknown persons. Meanwhile, a DCM van parked inside the HMDA complex at Tarnaka abutting the university campus got partially damaged in a mysterious fire that broke out in its cabin in the night.
The fire was doused within minutes by locals and the van’s chassis and seats were damaged. No case has been registered and police are probing whether the incident was an accident or sabotage.