In the letter dated September 3, TDP politburo member Varla Ramaiah said the ruling YSRCP was using the pandemic as an excuse to illegally detain and arrest TDP leaders and cadre.
The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) wrote a letter to National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) Chairman, urging him to conduct an inquiry into the allegedly illegal arrests, unlawful detentions and house arrests in the State. The TDP sought appropriate action against those responsible for registering these cases, which it claimed were callous.
In the letter dated September 3, TDP politburo member Varla Ramaiah said the party had organised State-wide protests on August 28 against the steep increase in petrol and diesel prices in Andhra Pradesh. The protests were held in a peaceful manner following COVID-19 protocol, to exert pressure on the State government to reduce fuel price, the letter said.
“In this backdrop, the ruling party has unleashed the police force and accordingly, TDP leaders, cadre and the general public were arrested, and others were placed under house arrest,” he alleged in the letter.
The police, in violation of democratic norms and constitutionally-guranteed rights, illegally detained demonstrators, placed them under house-arrest, filed cases and made arrests, he said.
“The same police are turning a blind eye to the mass gatherings, processions and meetings organised by the ruling YSRCP leaders,” he alleged, adding, “the YSRCP-led government has been using the pandemic as an excuse to target and victimise TDP leaders, cadre and sympathisers.”
A quick and prompt action by the NHRC would help in restoring democracy, and upholding fundamental rights in general and freedom of expression guaranteed under Article 19 in particular, in the State of Andhra Pradesh, he said.