HYDERABAD: The Huzurabad Assembly constituency has become a powder keg ready to go off at any time after the Election Commission of India (ECI) issued orders to defer the implementation of Dalit Bandhu in the segment until the completion of the byelection process, with even Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao joining the fray of those disapproving the poll panel for 'transgression' of its limits.
The Chief Minister, who was visiting Yadadri temple on Tuesday, in reply to a reporter's query on the ECI's decision, said the decision was only a small obstacle. "For how many days can the ECI stop implementation of the scheme? It will be resumed on November 4. The scheme will continue without any impediments," he said.
After the ECI issued the orders on Monday, tensions flared up in the constituency over who was responsible for it. SC Development Minister Koppula Eshwar slammed the BJP for petitioning the ECI against the scheme.
As the day progressed on Tuesday, the battle between the two parties reached a fever pitch, turning Huzurabad into a battleground. The tinderbox seemed set to go off any minute, as both the parties seemed to keep their powder dry. A rash of protests broke out across the constituency, in which SCs, who were sympathetic to the TRS, began calling the BJP and its candidate Eatala Rajender names.
At several places in the constituency, Rajender's effigy was burnt. At Korapalli in Jammikunta mandal, TRS activists staged a similar protest even as the BJP activists tried to set fire to the Chief Minister's effigy.In Jammikunta, Finance Minister T Harish Rao blamed BJP leader G Premender Reddy's petition for the ECI's restraining orders.
Responding to this, Premender Reddy said: "In the memorandum which I submitted to the ECI on October 7, I did not say that Dalit Bandhu should be stopped. I am ready to end my life by hanging myself at Ambedkar Centre in Huzuarbad if TRS leaders can prove their claims."