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Teachers to go on strike in Andhra

Move to bring government schools to a grinding halt

Gulf News

Hyderabad: Even as the continuing indefinite strike by the government employees in Andhra and Rayalaseema regions for the past eight days has crippled the administration and derailed the process of admission to engineering colleges, affecting hundreds of thousands of youth, more than 250,000 teachers were set to join the strike from Wednesday midnight.

United Andhra Pradesh Teachers Struggle Committee today gave a strike notice to the Chief Secretary P.K. Mohanty. The move will bring the government schools across the 13 districts of the two regions to a grinding halt. The striking teachers were also likely to pressurize the private educational institutions to shut down to press their demand that the state should not be bifurcated by the central government.

The counselling for admission to engineering college remained stuck in many districts including Vishakhapatanam for the second consecutive day today. The students were facing difficulty reaching the respective admission centres as buses were off the roads and agitators had blocked the road. At many places the government officials were also boycotting the crucial process.

However the counselling was progressing smoothly in Telangana region where government employees and teachers were in general discharging their duties. However the employees from Seema-Andhra region working in Hyderabad and elsewhere in Telangana were also participating in the protest demonstration.

Meanwhile the Seema-Andhra employees of state Secretariat in Hyderabad have also threatened to go on indefinite strike from September 2.

Even as the Congress leaders, ministers, MPs and MLAs from Seema-Andhra region were appearing before the Congress appointed Antony Committee to submit their objections to formation of Telangana state, the future status of Hyderabad has become the subject of raging debate. Sources said that some of the Seema-Andhra leaders will threaten to resign if their demands were not accepted.

The Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy today landed in New Delhi on a summons from the party high command. Soon after his arrival Seema-Andhra leaders met the Chief Minister, who is under fire for his anti-Telangana stance.

The Antony Committee, which heard the representations from the Telangana leaders of Congress party has suggested them to hold direct talks with Seema-Andhra leaders to allay their fears.

Telangana leaders said that while they were ready to assure the Seema-Andhra people and guarantee to protect their rights, they refused to compromise on the future of Hyderabad. They said that anything less than Telangana state with Hyderabad as its capital will not be acceptable to them.

They rejected the other ideas like making Hyderabad a union territory or a permanent joint capital of the two states or even Rayala Telangana state which includes two districts of Rayalaseema.

Telangana leaders told the committee that if the process of Telangana state formation was speeded up, the agitation in Rayalaseema will become weaker as the people in the region will see bifurcation as inevitable.

Meanwhile, the indefinite hunger strike by YSR Congress party honorary president YS Vijayalakshmi in Guntur city today entered the second day. Her protest was attracting massive crowds in the city centre.