The employees from Telangana and Seemandhra (Rayalaseema and Andhra) on Tuesday nearly came to blows at Jala Soudha and Vidyut Soudha, the offices of irrigation and electricity departments respectively.

The incident at Jala Soudha took place during lunch hour when Seemandhra employees were staging a protest against the central government's decision to bifurcate the state. They were raising slogans in favour of 'samaikya Andhra' or united Andhra.

The employees from Telangana, who were holding a meeting at the same office to mark the birth anniversary of late leader Jayashankar, raised counter slogans, supporting formation of Telangana state. The two sides had heated arguments and nearly came to blows.

Police intervened to prevent the situation from turning ugly.Tension prevailed at Vidyut Soudha when a Telugu Desam Party (TDP) leader P Keshav, opposing the state's division, visited the office to meet Seemandhra employees. The two sides raised slogans against each other.

Telangana employees took strong exception to TDP leader's visit and some of them allegedly tried to attack him. Police prevented a clash. Keshav visited the office a day after leaders of Telangana Joint Action Committee and Telangana Rashtra Samithi called on Telangana employees.

Meanwhile, Seemandhra employees continued their protest at the state secretariat. Raising slogans of "we want Hyderabad" and "we want samaikya Andhra", they took out a rally and demanded that the central government should reverse its decision.

Secretariat, the seat of governance, is deserted ever since the central government July 30 took the decision to bifurcate the state. Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy is not attending his office at the secretariat and is confined to his camp office or official residence.

The Ministers from Seemandhra are also not coming to the secretariat as many of them are busy meeting the Chief Minister or lobbying in Delhi against the state's division.

(Agencies)

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