As TSRTC strike enters day 36, over 5000 protesters lay siege at Tank bund, clash with police intensify
Police on Friday had already denied permission to the TSRTC employees' unions to organise the 'Chalo Tank Bund' protest over various demands including merger of the RTC with the government.
HYDERABAD: As the strike by Telangana State Road Transport Corporation (TSRTC) entered the 36th day, over 5,000 protesters, most of them employees of the TSRTC, broke open the barricades placed by police and lay siege at Tank bund on Saturday as part of the 'Chalo Tank Bund' call.
This was given by the TSRTC Joint Action Committee(JAC), supported by the opposition political parties and civil society organisations, as part of the ongoing strike by the Corporation employees in the state.
For the first time since Telangana's formation in 2014, Tank Bund witnessed violent clashes between protesters and the police.
The clashes went on for more than three hours, which saw the police use brutal force including lathi charge and even tear gas to disperse the protesters who had resorted to stone pelting on the security personnel.
Amidst the rising tempers several RTC workers and party workers, students and policemen were injured as the clashes took a violent turn. Several inspectors and police personnel were seen bleeding and some protestors had to be taken to hospital for urgent medical help.
The protesters in batches started attempts to breach the barricades at Tank Bund by afternoon around 1 pm and they used the tactics of coming in batches of few hundreds from different sides to capture the area and amplify their protests.
It was only by 3 pm that the situation turned into an ultimate showdown when a large number of protesters turned up from all sides and clashed with the police forces.
Though several key TSRTC employees' unions and political party leaders had been detained by the police over the last two days to clamp down on the Chalo Tank Bund protests, Karimnagar Member of Parliament of the BJP, Bandi Sanjay, Karimnagar managed to reach Hyderabad and participate in the protests.
"It is highly condemnable to see KCR (Chief Minister, K Chandrashekar Rao) quell the protests, the way he has done today. He must remember it was protests like these that made him who he is", said Kumar.
Several key left party leaders and TSRTC JAC leaders also made appearances in the clashes only to be arrested by the police.