Hyderabad: Eight MPs and at least four MLAs are among hundreds of pro-Telangana agitators arrested by police on Saturday, as the three-day rail-roko agitation, called by Telangana statehood seekers, began on a violent note here, paralysing train services in Andhra Pradesh.

The arrests were made under various provisions of Railway Protection Act and Indian Penal Code.

Telangana Rashtra Samiti president K Chandrasekhar Rao and Joint Action Committee convenor M Kodandaram have been booked under the Railway Protection Act for giving the call for rail-roko, though they have not yet been arrested yet, Inspector General of Police (Law and Order) A R Anuradha said.

As many as seven MPs of the ruling Congress party, including Rajya Sabha member K Keshava Rao, and TRS MP Vijayasanthi were arrested.

TRS chief KCR's son and MLA K T Rama Rao was arrested at Sitaphalmandi railway station here for abusing and threatening police officers on duty. KCR's daughter Kavita was also arrested under the Railway Protection Act.

Besides the arrest of 249 people, 2,133 people were taken into preventive custody in connection with the agitation. Last night, 718 persons had been already been taken into custody.

Incidents of violence were reported from different parts of Telangana, including the state capital Hyderabad.

Unidentified agitators removed fish-plates and railway track clips in Warangal and Karimnagar districts, she said.

A police Sub-Inspector was seriously injured on his head, while his gunman also sustained injuries, when a violent mob pelted stones on police at Mahbubabad railway station in Warangal district.

In Osmania University in Hyderabad, violence erupted as miscreants, in the guise of students, hurled stones at police, forcing the latter to use teargas to quell the mob.

An assistant drill instructor and two constables were injured when miscreants pelted stones on their bus. Passenger buses were damaged at Vanasthalipuram and Tarnaka in Hyderabad city.

The other arrested Congress MPs include S Rajaiah, G Vivekananda, Ponnam Prabhakar, Komatireddy Rajagopal Reddy, Madhu Yashki Goud and Balram Naik. Among the total eight MPs arrested, three – Rajaiah, Vivekananda and Vijayasanthi – were booked under the Railway Protection Act and others under IPC, according to Anuradha.

Besides K T Rama Rao, other TRS MLAs T Harish Rao, Koppula Eshwar and Congress MLA Kavita were also among those arrested at different places.

The railways operated five Express and seven passenger trains through the Telangana region with full police protection while 35 Multi-Modal Transit System trains were also run in Hyderabad. However, more than 110 trains remained cancelled as a precautionary measure because of the agitation. Another 68 trains were run on diverted routes.

Additional Director General of Government Railway Police Varun Sindhu Kul Kaumudi conducted an aerial survey in the state government helicopter to inspect the railway tracks in many districts of Telangana. The rail-roko incidents were also videographed from the helicopter.

Later in the evening, Kaumudi submitted a report to the Chief Minister on the rail-roko-related incidents. Director General of Police V Dinesh Reddy spoke to Superintendents of Police in Telangana through a video-conference to take stock of the situation. He directed them to be on alert and prevent any untoward incidents as the agitation was scheduled to continue for two more days.

(Agencies)