The 57th anniversary celebrations of formation of Andhra Pradesh were marred by protests in support of a separate Telangana state. Telangana supporters hoisted black flags at many places in Hyderabad and other parts of the region to 'mark the betrayal day'.
While Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy hoisted the national flag at an official function at the NTR Stadium, a few kilometers away students from the Osmania University clashed with the police.
The students' Joint Action Committee had called for a march to the NTR stadium, but the police stopped them at the campus gates, leading to a confrontation.
The police said that the students pelted stones at them. The campus was enveloped in smoke as the police fired tear gas shells and used force to disperse the protestors.
The police had turned the NTR stadium in to a fortress and sealed all the roads leading towards the venue of the official function. No one was allowed without a pass and gathering was very small. Several ministers and Congress leaders from Telangana region also stayed away from the function.
The police put the Telangana Joint Action Committee convenor Prof Kodanda Ram under house arrest as he had planned a protest demonstration at the Martyrs Memorial near the state assembly.
The police also arrested another pro-Telangana Member of Legislative Assembly Nagam Janardhan Reddy when he tried to go to Osmania University campus.
In Warangal, the police used force against the pro-Telangana supporters when they put up a black flag atop the district Congress office. The police also arrested the local Telangana Rashtra Samithi MLA Vinay Bhaskar.
In Nizamabad, too police arrested Telangana supporters when they tried to hoist a black flag at the district collectorate.
Andhra Pradesh was formed in 1956 by merging the then separate Telangana state with the Andhra region, which was earlier part of Madras Presidency.