This article is in continuity of the last week’s article and focuses on incidents that happened after the issuance of Government Order No. 36
January 20, 1969: The High Court stated that mulki rules are constitutional. It however stated that people removed from service must be accommodated by creating supernumerary posts. On the same day first firing took place in agitation at Omdanagar railway station in Shamshabad. The police personnel fired at agitating students and the then Hyderabad Collector ordered for a magisterial enquiry into the firing.
January 21, 1969: The movement turned violent with police lathi charging a gathering of 300 students in the Nizam College resulting in injuries to both students and police personnel. On the same day T Purushotham Rao, president for committee on safeguards announced in Warangal that there agitation would be stopped till February 20. On the same day, Police firing took place at Zaheerabad and Palvancha.
January 22, 1969: Ravindranath withdrew his fast after it was declared that the Chief Minister had accepted his demands. Jalagam Vengalrao played a key role in convincing Ravindranath’s family in influencing him to withdraw his fast. Unexpected withdrawal of fast by Ravindranath was a setback for the agitation
January 23, 1969: Potu Krishnamurthy also withdrew his fast with the implementation of G.O.No:36
January 24, 1969: In a public meeting organised in Vijayawada the then CM was questioned about agitation for a separate Telangana State and on extension of mulki rules. The CM replied that there was no chance of a separate State for Telangana and that mulki rules would not be extended.
This further intensified the agitation in Telangana region.
AP Employment Rules 1959 came into force on March 21, 1959. It provided reservations for locals of Telangana in certain posts in public employment. It was to be in force for five years after which it may be extended every five years. It was extended for the first time on March 21, 1964 and the second extension was scheduled to take place on March 21, 1969.
First martyr on 1969 agitation: On January 24, 1969, a group of students gheraoed a sub-inspector in Sadashivpet as a part of agitation. In reaction to this, the police opened firing in which several students were injured and two amongst them Shankar and Krishna died while undergoing treatment.
Thus Shankar became the first martyr of the 1969 agitation.
In reaction to this incident:
• Telangana agitators gheraoed Andhra employees in Jammikunta and Huzurabad of Karimnagar district
• The students of Khammam presented bangles to Telangana Ministers.
• The word Andhra found on boards of various government institutions in the twin cities were painted black.
• Students of Osmania University requested management of Andhra Mahila Sabha to change its name to Telangana Mahila Sabha.
January 25, 1969 : The Osmania University (OU) VC ordered closure of campus colleges as the students JAC gave a call for protest. A meeting in connection with the agitation for the separate State was convened at the engineering college of OU which was attended by thousands of students. Section 144 imposed in Sadashivpet.
As mentioned in G.O. 36., the CAG sent Kumar Lalith to Hyderabad to estimate the Telangana surplus funds.
Agitations against separate Telangana State were held by Andhra students and demanded that the capital should be changed to Vijayawada, as Andhra people were attacked in Telangana region.
The agitators in Andhra painted milk vans and buses travelling from Andhra to Telangana with slogans
i) Protect rights of people of Andhra
ii) Shift the capital to Vijayawada
iii) No separate State for Telangana
January 27, 1969:
Shankar became first martyr of the 1969 agitation. Reactions to his death:
The members of the opposition in Hyderabad Municipal Corporation wanted to pass a condolence resolution for Shankar which was not accepted as a consequence of which they walked out of the meeting.
OU students JAC declared that “the 2nd chapter of Telangana agitation for statehood has begun”.
Student leader Mallikarjun announced that meeting will be held with student representatives and other distinguished people from Telangana on March 1, 1969.
About 200 non-mulki employees of KTPS were transferred to Andhra. This transfer was an indication of the success of Potu Krishnamurthi 14-day hunger strike.
In an agitation in Guntur district, a student died in police firing. The effigy of Marri Chenna Reddy was burnt in several places in Andhra region.
January 28, 1969: Telangana “Vimochana Udyama Samithi” held the meeting in Warangal which was preceded by Kaloji Narayana Rao. Resolutions approved in the meeting were
i). The CM must resign
ii) President rule must be imposed in the State.
January 29, 1969: Shoot at site orders were issued in some places in Telangana. Lakshma Reddy president of congress party in Nalgonda district condemned the reports of Andhra newspapers that there were attacks on Andhra people in Nalgonda.
The authorities of OU got the students to vacate the hostels. Agitated by this, Mallikarjun asked students to attend the classes. However, the students refused and convinced Mallikarjun to continue the strike.
To be continued