Tribune News Service
Mumbai, September 14
A local magistrate in Nanded district has ordered the arrest of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, sparking off protests in that case.
According to sources in Nanded, N R Gajbhiye, judicial magistrate first class from Dharmabad town, issued a non-bailable warrant against Naidu and his associates, including several cabinet colleagues. According to the warrant, they are to be produced before the court by September 21.
The arrest warrant pertains to a case filed against them in 2010 when Naidu and his associates were holding protests against the Babli project on the Godavari river. The leaders from the then undivided state of Andhra Pradesh had alleged that the construction of the barrage on the river upstream at Babli in Maharashtra would result in a drop in water supply to areas lying downstream in the neighbouring state.
Naidu and others had been arrested and were taken briefly to the Pune jail.
Copies of the court order being shared on social media show it was dated July 5 and was to be executed by August 16. Hand-written corrections to the order indicate that the arrest warrants against Naidu and his associates would have to be executed by September 21.
Apart from the Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister, state water resources minister Devineni Umamaheswara Rao, social welfare minister N Anand Babu and former MLA G Kamalakar who is now with the Telangana Rashtra
Samiti have been named in the warrant.
According to sources from Nanded, a local resident had filed a petition seeking the arrest of Naidu and other Telugu Desam leaders.
The Babli barrage was constructed after the Supreme Court ordered Maharashtra Government to ensure that water supply was not disrupted to villages in Andhra Pradesh.
The magistrate's order has sparked off protests in Andhra Pradesh and Telengana.