Former Andhra Pradesh chief minister and TDP President N Chandrababu Naidu was today arrested by Maharashtra Police for allegedly violating prohibitory orders in Nanded district.
Naidu was arrested along with five MPs and seven MLAs of his party, Home Minister R R Patil told the Legislative Assembly. The former CM and his supporters were scheduled to visit Babhli barrage irrigation project in Nanded district, which borders Andhra Pradesh, for an "inspection". The TDP has alleged that the barrage is being "illegally" built by Maharashtra.
The TDP legislators were later shifted to an Industrial Training Institute at Dharmabad on the AP-Maharashtra border. "The Maharashtra Police deceived us. They promised to take us to the Babhli project site, but clandestinely they brought us first to the Dharmabad police station. They made Chandrababu and other leaders to sit on the floor," TDP senior MLA Erraballi Dayakar Rao, who was among those arrested, said.
Tension prevailed on the border as news spread about the arrest of Naidu and other TDP leaders. Angry TDP workers tried to march towards Maharashtra side, but police prevented them from doing so. When contacted, an official from Dharmabad police station said Naidu and others were detained under the Bombay Police Act for violating prohibitory orders.
Maharashtra started the 2.74 TMC project to bring 8,000 hectares land in Nanded under irrigation. However, the Andhra Pradesh government moved the apex court in 2006 saying if the barrage across Godavari river was allowed to be completed, it would result in reverse flow of water and the state would be denied its due share of water awarded by the Godavari Tribunal.
Two hearings were held in 2007 and the apex court allowed Maharashtra to construct the barrage, Patil said. The next hearing is scheduled on August 10, he told the House. Maharashtra has spent about Rs 165 crore on the Rs 170 crore project, but has not installed gates in the barrage as directed by the apex court, Patil said. PTI