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700 days & counting: Amaravati farmers brave rains to continue their protests

Undeterred by rain, farmers from Amaravati continued their long march to Tirupati seeking divine intervention for retaining Amaravati as the sole capital of Andhra Pradesh.
 
Farmers from the capital region have been protesting against the ruling government from over the last two years on Capital confusion created by the YSRCP government. Joining them as an expression of solidarity, Communist Party of India (Marxist) polit bureau member B.V. Raghavulu challenged the YSR Congress Party government to order a referendum on its three capital policy. 
 
“'Let the people decide whether they want capital at one place or three different places,” he said. “'The interest of the people and the State should be paramount and not that of political parties,” he asserted drawing loud cheers from the farmers who resumed their “court to temple Mahapadayatra” from Kandukur town to Gudlur, and covered a distance of 16 km. 
 
“Utter confusion will only prevail if a decision taken by one government is reversed by the government that succeeds,” he opined. Mr. Raghavulu, who rode a bullock cart along with former TDP MLA Divisivaram, maintained that Amaravati was best suited for locating the capital being equidistant from all corners of the State. 
 
No funds, no development
 
The State government was not in a position to develop the required infrastructure for capital at three different places as it faced a severe cash crunch post-bifurcation, he said.
 
The 157 walkers from the capital region marched enthusiastically on the water-logged roads, evoking good response from fellow farmers in villages en route. Local people filled the walkers with enthusiasm by playing “dappu” and “kolatam” and offered refreshments. 
 
They also showered flower petals on the walkers and broke coconuts and pumpkins after offering harathi to the chariot of Lord Venkateswara which was in the forefront. Looks like this people's protest is getting louder by the day as their grit continues to inspire citizens across the state!
 

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