Sharmila’s padayatra yet to resume as police serve show cause notice

YSR Telangana Party (YSRTP) leader Y.S. Sharmila’s padayatra could not resume in Warangal district on Sunday as the police have not yet given the permission for the same.

The Warangal district police have served a show cause notice asking her to explain why the application for permission should not be rejected as the conditions laid down while granting permission earlier were violated.

Reacting to this, Sharmila said a legal reply will be submitted to the Warangal police. She said if the police still failed to give permission for the resumption of padyatra, the party would fight a legal battle.

She had planned to resume the walkathon from Lingagiri Cross in Narsampet where the padyatra was stopped following an attack allegedly by workers of ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) on November 28.

Protesting against some remarks made by Sharmila against local MLA of TRS, the protesters had set afire her bus and pelted stones on other vehicles. Later, police arrested Sharmila as she refused to call off the padyatra in view of the tense situation in the area.

Police had shifted Sharmila to Hyderabad. The next day, she was arrested again amid high drama while leading a protest march towards the chief minister’s official residence. She was driving the car damaged in the attack and wanted to stage a protest in front of Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao’s residence. The police, however, stopped her enroute. When she refused to come out of the car, the police towed it away to a police station.

The sister of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy and some other YSRTP leaders were booked under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and produced before the magistrate. The court granted them bail.

The same day, the Telangana High Court granted conditional permission to YSRTP to resume the padyatra.

YSRTP leader on December 1 met Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan and urged her to intervene and seek a report from the Home Ministry, and the office of the DGP about the manner in which she was arrested in Hyderabad.

In the representation submitted to the governor, she alleged that the TRS government has been ‘trampling the hands that are raised in protest, and strangling the voices that scream in hopelessness.’

Sharmila told the governor that she now sees a possible threat to the lives of committed party workers, and continued attacks on her padayatra.

The next day, she submitted a memorandum to DGP Mahender Reddy requesting him to direct the police authorities to provide adequate security for her padayatra, which she resumed on Friday. She also asked the DGP to take action against the politically motivated “anti-social elements” and said there was a serious threat to the lives of the party workers.

She said she has been receiving threats from the leaders of the ruling party in Warangal district that she will be targeted everywhere.

Sharmila, the daughter of former Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy, began her 4,000 km long ‘Praja Prasthanam padayatra’ on October 20, 2021. Last week, she completed 3,500 km.

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