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Hundreds arrested in Telangana to foil protest march

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Hyderabad: Hundreds of Left party activists and other mass organisations across Telangana were arrested on Wednesday to foil their march to the state assembly to protest killing of two Maoists by police.

Leaders and workers of various organisations were detained in different districts to prevent them from heading for Hyderabad to participate in the march called by Telangana Democratic Front (TDF).

Eminent academician Chuka Ramaiah was kept under house arrest in Hyderabad. He said arrests will not stop the movement.

The assembly building in the heart of the city virtually turned into a fortress as police imposed restrictions on all roads leading towards the assembly. A large number of policemen were deployed in the area to prevent protesters.

Tension prevailed at Osmania University as students gathered on the campus to march in violation of the prohibitory orders imposed by police. Policemen in riot gear were deployed at the gates to prevent students from coming out.

Scores of students and their leaders were arrested at Osmania University and Nizam College hostels since Tuesday night.

Police denied permission to the march on the ground that Maoists may participate in it and indulge in violence.

Those arrested in districts like Warangal, Khammam, Mahabubnagar, Karimnagar, Medak and Nalgonda include women and students.

Raising slogan against the government and calling for an end to “fake encounters”, the protesters took out rallies in different parts of the state.

Communist Party of India-Marxist Telangana state secretary T. Veerabhadram said 3,000 to 4,000 activists were arrested across the state. He termed the arrests as undemocratic.

Maoists Shruthi and Vidyasagar were killed near Medaram of Warangal district on September 16. It was the first such killing after the formation of separate Telangana state last year.

Terming it as a “fake encounter”, 370 organisations, including 10 left parties and the groups which fought for separate Telangana state, have come together under the banner of TDF to condemn the killings. It is demanding probe by a sitting judge.

While denying permission for ‘chalo assembly’, police said it was reliably learnt that TDF was formed at the instance of CPI-Maoist and the programme was being organised in support of its cause and the ideology.

Police apprehended that Maoist cadres, supporters, sympathisers and activists of all mass organisations of CPI-Maoist from Telangana, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Andhra-Odisha border will reach Hyderabad in large numbers and indulge in large scale violence.

(With inputs from IANS)

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Climate Change Activists Camp Out during World Protests by Extinction Rebellion Movement

Determined activists glued themselves to the British government's Department of Transport building as police working

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Climate Change, Activists, World
Climate protesters pass Brexit banners and flags outside Parliament in London, Britain, Oct. 8, 2019. VOA

Hundreds of climate change activists camped out in central London on Tuesday during a second day of world protests by the Extinction Rebellion movement to demand more urgent actions to counter global warming.

Determined activists glued themselves to the British government’s Department of Transport building as police working to keep streets clear appealed to protesters to move to Trafalgar Square.

Cities in Australia, elsewhere in Europe and other parts of the world also had climate change protests for a second day.

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Climate Change, Activists, World
An Extinction Rebellion climate change protester hugs an inflatable planet Earth, near Downing Street in London, Britain, Oct. 8, 2019. VOA

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson appealed Monday to the protesters to stop blocking London’s streets. He called the activists “uncooperative crusties” who should abandon their “hemp-smelling bivouacs.”

Mike Gumn, 33, a National Health Service manager with two children, said he used a day of annual leave so he could attend the demonstration. Gumn, of Bristol, took umbrage at Johnson’s characterization of climate change activists as “hippies.”

“I want to make a statement that (the activists) are all different sorts of people from all different walks of life, not just people you would call hippies,” he said.

Authorities arrested 319 people at the London protests on Monday.

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Disruption continued in other major cities. In Brisbane, Australia, protesters chained themselves to intersections in the city center and three people locked themselves onto barrels filled with concrete. A protester hanging from a harness beneath Brisbane’s Story Bridge and brandishing “climate emergency” flags was taken into police custody and charged with unregulated high-risk activity.

Queensland police confirmed 29 people – ranging in age from 19 to 75 – were arrested in the city, and six others were arrested in Sydney after lying in a downtown street intersection.

More than 100 protesters dressed as bees at Sydney’s Hyde Park to highlight their claim that insects are under threat due to the impact of humans on the environment.

Some activists camped at Melbourne’s Carlton Gardens overnight before marching to a street corner locked down by more than 100 protesters in inclement weather. Police arrested 59 people for blocking an intersection.

Climate Change, Activists, World
Climate protesters from the Extinction Rebellion movement demonstrate at Town Hall in Sydney, Australia, Oct. 8, 2019. VOA

“I don’t know that shutting the city down necessarily wins you many friends,” Victoria premier Daniel Andrews said.

In Perth, about 50 protesters converged outside the offices of The West Australian, the city’s daily newspaper. The front page of Tuesday’s paper was left intentionally blank for protesters to use as a placard.

Founded in Britain last year, Extinction Rebellion has chapters in some 50 countries and wants to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2025.

On Monday, activists with the movement stopped traffic in European cities and smeared themselves and emblems of Wall Street in fake blood and lay in New York streets.

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In Berlin, 300 people blocked Potsdamer Platz, placing couches, tables, chairs and flowerpots on the road. They earlier set up a tent camp outside German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s office out of dissatisfaction with her government’s climate policy.

Merkel’s chief of staff, Helge Braun, criticized the group’s tactics.

“We all share an interest in climate protection, and the Paris climate targets are our standard in this,” he told ZDF television. “If you demonstrate against or for that, that is OK. But if you announce dangerous interventions in road traffic or things like this, of course that is just not on.” (VOA)