Fasting Andhra MP Rajagopal arrested, shifted to hospital
Hyderabad: Congress MP L Rajagopal was Saturday arrested in Vijayawada and shifted to a hospital as his condition started deteriorating on the fifth day of his indefinite hunger strike to oppose the proposed bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh.
Tension prevailed in Vijayawada city of coastal Krishna district as Rajagopal continued his fast in the hospital while his supporters staged road blockades.
Police said Rajagopal was shifted to hospital but refused to undergo treatment.
A large number of policemen surrounded Swaraj Maidan, where the Vijayawada MP was fasting. His supporters tried to resist the arrest but personnel of the anti-Maoist force Greyhounds dispersed them and took the MP to hospital.
Doctors at the government-run hospital said the industrialist MP was refusing to take medication and demanding that he be shifted to Nizam`s Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS) in Hyderabad.
Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) president K. Chandrasekhara Rao had also been shifted to NIMS after his condition deteriorated at a hospital in Khammam town during his `fast unto death` for a separate Telangana.
After the 11-day fast by Rao, the central government Dec 9 agreed to initiate the process for the formation of a separate Telangana state.
Rajagopal`s supporters, meanwhile, blocked traffic on the Vijayawada-Hyderabad national highway. Congress leader M. Buddha Prasad and his supporters were arrested for blocking traffic.
For the second consecutive day normal life came to a standstill in Vijayawada and other parts of Krishna district as a 48-hour shutdown called by the Joint Action Committee (JAC) of all parties and other groups for `united Andhra` continued.
Shops, business establishments and educational institutions remained closed in Guntur and West Godavari districts in response to the shutdown call by various political parties.
Protests are continuing for the ninth day in Andhra and Rayalaseema regions against the proposed division of the state.
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