Varavara Rao arrested

Hyderabad: Revolutionary writer and civil rights activist Varavara Rao and some other activists were arrested on Thursday following a protest in front of NTR Trust Bhavan. The activists, led by Varavara Rao staged a sit-in, demanding that Maoist leaders, including Ramakrishna, be produced in court immediately.

Tension prevailed near the TDP office for about two hours as the activists resorted to slogan shouting and blocking of traffic. When the police intervened and tried to arrest them, they resorted to pelting of stones at the TDP office. The police, which was present in large numbers, resorted to lathicharge and later arrested them.

Speaking to mediapersons later, Varavara Rao said he got information that  some important Maoist leaders – Ramakrishna popularly known as RK and Gajarla Ravi, secretary of the Andhra-Odisha Border (AoB) area, were taken into custody immediately after the alleged naxal encounter in which more than 20 extremists were killed recently.

He questioned the government for not producing them before the courts. Varavara Rao said that they did not believe the statement of Visakhapatnam Rural SP Rahul Dev Sarma who denied that no Maoist leader was in police custody.

Addressing the protesters, Varavara Rao warned that the TDP government in Andhra Pradesh would be held responsible if any harm was done to RK and his associates.

He lashed out at the AP government for resorting to fake encounters on the pretext of combing operations in the forest areas. Varavara Rao demanded that the government make public the post-mortem reports of the slained Maoists.