Mala, Madigas clash at Ambedkar jayanti celebrations


Once News
HYDERABAD : Members of Mala and Madiga communities clashed at the
official Ambedkar Jayanti celebrations on Tank Bund here on Monday,
leading to an abrupt end to the public meeting organised to mark the
occasion.
            It all started when Madiga Reservation Porata Samithi
(MRPS) convener Manda Krishna was about to address the gathering under
a huge tent in front of Ambedkar's statue in the afternoon.
            Supporters of Krishna started singing a song in his praise
which was objected to by members of Mala community on the ground that
the occasion did not warrant admiring anyone other than Ambedkar.
However, the Madigas raised their voice of protest against the demand
of the rivals.
           Soon, a portion of the crowd was divided into two groups on
caste lines. They raised slogans and pushed each other. The dais was
swarmed by a number of people from both sides. They threw the tables,
chairs and mike all over as the guests seated on the dais left the
place.
          Appeals by  Krishna and a Mala leader Kashanna for
maintenance of peace went in vain. Krishna left the venue a little
later as the public address system went out of order. The police
stepped in immediately to bring the situation under control. With
that, the organisers announced the end of the programme.
          Later, the Mala community staged a dharna near the statue of
Ambedkar while the Madigas held a similar demonstration near the
statue of Babu Jagjeevan Ram in front of Nizam College.
          A steady stream of people in groups and processions was
witnessed at Ambedkar's statue throughout the day. Andhra Pradesh
Governor N.D. Tiwari, Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy and Telugu
Desam president N. Chandrababu Naidu, were among those who garlanded
the statue.

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