HYDERABAD, India (AFP) - A student tried to set himself ablaze Saturday as fresh demonstrations erupted in southern India calling for the creation of a new state. The 19-year-old student was in critical condition with 70 percent burns to his body after setting fire to himself near Osmania University in Hyderabad, capital of Andhra Pradesh state, police said. This student came rushing towards the university gate and attempted to immolate himself. He was rushed to hospital with burns, Mahesh Ladda, a senior police officer, told AFP. The incident came as thousands of stone-hurling students battled police as they tried to march on the local assembly where the government was releasing the state budget. Police threw up barricades outside the assembly and prevented the students from reaching the building. Hyderabad, home to international IT giants such as Google and Microsoft, has been the centre of frequently violent protests since the national government announced in December that Andhra Pradesh would be carved into two. Thousands of officers were deployed to control the demonstrators, police said. The Hindu newspaper reported on its website that the student who set himself alight had written a note stating the government was unresponsive to the aspirations of the people and a separate state should be formed immediately. Last month, two students burnt themselves to death to support demands for a separate state an 18-year-old woman and a 23-year-old man. Osmania University has been a gathering point for many of the protests for and against the creation of the planned new state, which is to be known as Telangana. The new state would cover much of Andhra Pradeshs impoverished tribal belt and include Hyderabad. The dispute has raged since those in favour of a separate state went on a hunger strike in November, led by former federal labour minister K. Chandras-ekhar Rao. Andhra Pradesh is Indias fifth-largest state in terms of territory, and the Telangana cause is championed by many locals who allege government neglect of the drought-prone area. Supporters of Telangana accuse the national government of backtracking on its pledge to create a new state.