Security has been beefed up along the Tank Bund for the protection of the recently reinstalled statues of the Telugu icons following speculations of threat emanating from the Telangana activists who are demanding that a committee of Telangana intellectuals and experts be appointed and its opinion sought before taking a final decision on inauguration of the statues.
“Fifteen policemen are guarding the statues 24x7,” said Gandhinagar police inspector B Mohan Kumar. “They would continue their job till the statues are inaugurated. According to the need, number of police personnel will also be increased,” he informed.
The 12 bronze statues that were vandalised by the Telangana agitators during the Million March in 2010, are now being installed at the Tank Bund. They are likely to be inaugurated, amid tight security, by several ministers on the Andhra Pradesh formation day on November 1.
“The installation is being carried out in three phases, with four statues being installed in each phase. The first phase is over and the second is in progress. The entire process is likely to be completed before October 12,” director of the department of culture RV Prasada Raju said.
“The details of the statues have been sent to the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) for getting the date and time of the inauguration. We were orally informed that the statues will be inaugurated on the state formation day, but official announcement is still awaited,” he added.
Statues of Annamayya, Guruzada Appa Rao, Kandukuri Veeresalingam and Cotton Dora have been already reinstalled and the statue of Telangana tribal leader Komaram Bheem has been installed at the Tank Bund. Chief minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy will reportedly be inaugurating Bheem’s statue on the Adilabad tribal leader’s death anniversary on October 29.
The installation of statues at Tank Bund commenced one-and-half years after they were vandalised. The 12 statues are of Sri Krishnadevaraya, Yerrapragada, Annamacharya, Siddendra Yogi, Brahmanaidu, Raghupathi Venkataratnam Naidu, Mutnuri Krishna Rao, Kandukuri Veeresalingam, Tripuraneni Ramswamy Choudary, Bellari Raghava, Sir Arthur Cotton and Gurajada Appa Rao. The statues were damaged by the T activists on March 10 last year during the protest march.