Telugu Desam Party senior MLA Errabilli Dayakar Rao and scores of party workers were today arrested when they attempted to lay siege to Andhra Pradesh chief minister's camp residence, demanding lifting of power cuts.
Rao was later kept under house arrest, where he launched a 'deeksha' seeking an immediate solution to the power crisis gripping the state.
Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy spoke to Dayakar Rao over phone and requested him to call off the protest but the latter demanded that the CM cancel his New Delhi trip and convene an all-party meeting to discuss the power crisis.
The chief minister, however, left for the national capital without conceding to TDP's demand.
Andhra Pradesh has been facing an unprecedented power crisis with the gap between demand and supply stretching to at least 50 million units a day, leading to widespread power cuts across sectors.
The industrial sector is the worst hit as a three-day "power holiday" has been declared for it. Even the agriculture sector has not been getting the assured seven hour power supply every day due to ever-increasing demand.
The chief minister said the state government was requesting the Centre to allocate 500 MW of additional power from different sources to overcome the crisis.
Reddy gave a call for conservation of electricity and suggested people should not use air-conditioners. "One unit of power saved is equal to 1.2 units of power generated," he said and stressed on the need for energy conservation.
Opposition parties have taken to the streets protesting the handling of the power sector by the Kiran Kumar Reddy government.