‘State has plunged into darkness despite the fact that huge gas and coal reserves are available’

The Communist Party of India-Marxist CPI(M) city unit’s five-day vidyut poru yatra concluded here on Wednesday.

The CPI(M) activists formed a human chain to protest the steep hike in power tariff and surcharges being levied by the State government.

Addressing the gathering on the occasion, MLC K. Lakshman Rao said the State plunged into darkness despite the fact that huge gas and coal reserves were available. The new economic policies were the root-cause of power crisis. Unmindful hike in the power tariff was indirectly hitting the transportation also. The prices of essential commodities rose phenomenally. The government has no proper plans on power. The people were forced to face unscheduled power cuts. The small-scale industries were closing down throwing tens of employees onto roads, he said, adding, the people should join hands and fight against the government policies.

CPI(M) city secretary Ch. Babu Rao was present.

CPI dharna

Meanwhile, the Communist Party of India (CPI) city unit has staged a dharna with empty pots and blind fold in protest against the power cuts and proposal to hike the water charges. CPI city secretary Donepudi Sankar on the occasion said that inefficiency of MLAs and MP has led to power cuts in the city. The elected representatives remained silent when the Vijayawada Municipal Corporation (VMC) was planning to hike the water charges, he alleged.

In Guntur, activists of Telugu Nadu Trade Union Council staged a demonstration in front of the electrical sub-station near TJPS College in protest against the frequent power cuts.

The agitators demanded that the Government should take urgent steps to solve the crisis which forced the shutdown of a large number of industries. Addressing the gathering, TNTUC State vice-president G. Seshagiri Rao said an estimated 30,000 industries have closed down due to the power cuts which severely hampered production necessitating large-scale retrenchments as the costs had to be reduced to mitigate the losses.

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