Tehsildar set on fire at her office in Telangana, land grievance suspected

In a shocking incident, Vijaya Reddy, the tehsildar at Abdullapurmet in Telangana, about 30 km from state capital Hyderabad, was set ablaze by a man named Suresh Mudiraju. Eyewitnesses said Suresh was seen speaking to Vijaya was close to half hour and was carrying passbooks in his hand. He then proceeded to pour kerosene on the tehsildar and set her on fire and also doused himself. The incident took place between 1 and 2 pm on Monday. 

While Vijaya died on the spot, Suresh who has now been arrested by the police, has been shifted to the Burns ward at Osmania Hospital. Some other employees who rushed to rescue Vijaya too were injured.

Preliminary information suggested that Suresh (pic below) who belonged to Gowrelli village in Hayathnagar mandal was aggrieved that he had been making several trips to the tehsildar’s office for making necessary corrections in his land records. Why the work had not been done, is not clear.

The police are investigating into whether it was a case of Suresh demanding some work to be done which could not be officially complied with or was Vijaya acting difficult. But the incident shows that frustration at the tehsildar not getting his work done, was building up and led to this crime.  

Revenue officials are planning to meet Telangana Home minister Mahmood Ali to demand more security at their offices. Soon after the incident, they blocked the Highway, obstructing traffic. 

It may be noted here that chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao has been speaking about revamping the Revenue and Land Registration department for some time. The insinuation has been that there is lack of transparency and corruption at different levels, angering farmers and land owners in rural Telangana. 

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