Congress replaces Ravana this Dussehra in Telangana
Dasera was celebrated in the Telangana region on Thursday under the shadow of the separate state protests as the agitators burnt the effigies of the top Congress party leaders.
Though the indefinite strike by the government employees, teachers and other sections in the region dampened the festivities, spirits remained high.
From Adilabad to Khammam, in all major towns and villages, Telangana agitators gathered and burnt cut-outs of Congress president Sonia Gandhi, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy, AICC General Secretary Ghulam Nabi Azad, and ministers Pranab Mukherji and P. Chidambaram.
In Warangal protesters clashed with police who tried to stop them. Similar effigies were also burnt in Karimnagar, Nizamabad, Hyderabad and other places with the slogans of "Jai Telangana".
The Telangana Joint Action Committee had called for people to mark Dasera with demonstrations.
Telangana Jagruti, a cultural organisation headed by TRS President K. Chandrashekhar Rao's daughter Kavita, also organised a "Batukamma" or "flower-dance" festival across the region as part of the campaign.
TJAC president Professor Kodanda Ram said there was no question of ending the protests until the demand was met.
"We have our plan of action ready until the end of this month. We will go ahead with the Rail Roko programme as per the schedule from Sunday," he said.
— By Omer Farooq, Correspondent
festivities under shadow of protests