A large number of Left parties’ activists took out a rally here on Sunday as a mark of solidarity with their leaders staging indefinite fast in Hyderabad in protest against the proposed hike in power tariff and imposition of surcharges with retrospective effect.

Addressing the gathering at Lodge Centre, CPI (M) district secretary D. Rama Devi said the Government had given clearances to private companies on liberal terms and even extended concessions on a large scale to private companies which benefited a lot from the largesse but did not generate a single unit of power.

The companies are virtually minting money by exploiting loopholes in the policies. The Reliance Industries was given the contract to extract natural gas from the Krishna-Godavari basin but it has been selling gas to customers outside the State at exorbitant prices.

Similar situation is prevalent in the coal sector where red carpet is rolled out to private miners. The consequences are there for everyone to see and the sad thing is that the common people are being made to pay a heavy price for the Government’s follies.

CPI District Secretary Muppalla Nageswara Rao said the Government proposed to mop up Rs. 17,000 crore through the power tariff hike. It is an unprecedented decision that is bound to drastically affect the consumers in all categories. The profit motive of private companies is the root cause of the present crisis, he asserted.

CPI (M) and CPI leaders P. Rama Rao, N. Kalidas, Y. Radhakrishna, J. Ajay Kumar, G.V. Krishna Rao, G. Suresh and others participated.