GUNTUR: Tension prevailed for some time in Ponugupadu village of Phirangipuram mandal of Guntur district on Saturday following the arrest of members of the TDP fact-finding Committee when they tried to visit the village to ascertain facts about a wall constructed in the open place, which is being used by a few people reportedly supporters of TDP as a road.
TDP fact-finding team comprising of Guntur-West MLA Maddali Giridhar, MLCs Bachula Arjunudu, Dokka Manikya Varaprasad, former MLA T Sravan Kumar and Guntur TDP district president GV Anjaneyulu were stopped by the police officials, 5 km from the village. It resulted in a heated argument.
TDP leaders maintained that they were going to the village to verify facts and not to create any disturbance, but the police citing Section 144 imposed in the village expecting trouble did not permit them.
TDP leaders were arguing, the police received orders to arrest them and remove them from the place. Immediately, the TDP leaders were arrested and taken away. Later, they were released.
When TDP activists in Ponugupadu village learned of the development, they staged a protest, but were immediately arrested and taken away to Narasaraopet police station, where they were released later, following protest by TDP activists at the police station.
On Friday, TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu alleged that YSRC followers were constructing a wall across a road at Ponugupadu obstructing the movement of people and said no action was taken by the police to remove the structure. Later in the night, he constituted a fact-finding committee to visit the place.
People belonging to SC community in the village on June 18 started constructing a wall in the place, which they said belongs to the church.
“When we knew about it, we asked them to stop construction of the wall as it is a disputed site. We told them that until the revenue officials take a decision, they should not involve themselves in any construction activity,” DSP M Veera Reddy told TNIE.
When contacted, M Joshi Babu, G Koteswara Rao and S Nagaraju, who represent the church-goers in the village, said the ‘Grama Kantam’ lands were equally divided among three communities - Hindu, Muslim and Christian - in the village.
While the other two communities had constructed buildings in the lands provided to them, they have left 5 cents belonging to them vacant, they said.
It was learnt that a few families, who were reported to be TDP supporters, were using the said land as a way to approach their fields, though there was an alternative way for the same.
After the elections, when Joshi Babu and others started constructing the wall, it was objected to.
On June 19, they lodged a complaint with the Phirangipuram police against the TDP leaders from obstructing them from constructing the wall in their own land.
Expecting trouble, additional forces were deployed in the village as a precautionary measure. Narasaraopet RDO said probe is on into the issue.