Hyderabad: Around 500 BJP workers, including former Union Minister Bandaru Dattatreya and BJP national secretary Dr K Laxman, were taken into preventive custody for holding protests in front of the police commissionerate on Tuesday.

BJP's Greater Hyderabad unit had organised a dharna opposite the Police Commissioner Office at Basheerbagh to protest cases registered against "innocent persons," including the party's workers, in connection with the recent incidents of communal violence in parts of the city, police said.

BJP leaders and workers gathered in front of the police commissioner office and raised slogans condemning police action and their alleged "failure" in acting against those responsible for the communal violence.

The area surrounding the commissionerate was cordoned off by erecting barricades and a large police force had been deployed to contain the protesters.

BJP workers were taken into preventive custody when they tried to meet Police Commissioner Anurag Sharma for submitting a memorandum. The detainees were later taken to various police stations, police said.

Greater Hyderabad city president Venkat Reddy and former MLA Baddan Balreddy were other BJP leaders taken into custody, they said.

Meanwhile, while Dattatreya was being taken away by the police, he said, "It is unfortunate that incidents of communal violence are being reported once again in Hyderabad city due to inefficiency of the state government."

Dattatreya also alleged that the police was trying to appease a particular party at the behest of the state government and foisting cases against innocent youths by delaying action in arresting those responsible for the crimes.

Demanding a high-level probe into the incidents of communal violence and theft in some temples, Dattatreya said police should probe the cases impartially.

Referring to incidents of violence reported last night at Sabjimandai and Ziaguda under Kulsumpura police station limits, he further alleged that the police was preventing his party's workers to visit the affected areas, whereas giving permission to leaders of another party.


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