Police arrested dozens of leaders and workers of opposition parties for staging protests at bus depots and for blocking the roads. In Khammam, protestors damaged a bus. At few places, they deflated the tyres of buses and auto-rickshaws.
Except the ruling Congress party, the activists of all parties blocked a highway in Kadapa district, leading to massive traffic jam. The opposition parties took out rallies and staged protests in Kadapa, Anantapur, Tirupati and other parts of Rayalaseema region.
In coastal Andhra, the shutdown evoked good response with the TDP and Left activists not allowing buses to leave the depots. The shutdown paralysed transport services in coastal city of Visakhapatnam, Vijayawada, Guntur and other towns. Shops and business establishments also remained closed in most of the towns in the region.
With the TRS also joining the protest in Telangana, the shutdown was total in the region, except in Hyderabad.
The protest in Andhra Pradesh is significant as the petrol price in the state is one of the highest in the country. The state levies 33 percent Value Added Tax (VAT) on petroleum products, the highest in the country.
Image: Police detain activists of opposition parties who tried to prevent buses from operating during a nationwide strike to protest a steep hike in gas prices in Hyderabad, India, Thursday, May 31, 2012.