Such problems plague every poor household. Either they do not have a house of their own or do not have a ‘patta' for the site of the house in which they have been living for decades. Some of them have a myriad number of problems with their ration cards, cooking gas, kerosene quotas or the depots from where they can collect their monthly rations.

Organisations affiliated to the Communist Party of India (Marxist) have taken upon themselves the challenge of resolving these countless problems that are obstacles to the common man “day in and day out”. Starting with a survey about two months ago, the fight to emancipate the underprivileged has almost come to a climax. The agitation will soon be intensified if there is no response, the activists say.

Activists and the potential beneficiaries have been staging relay hunger strikes in front of the sub-collector's office to build enough pressure on the various related departments to resolve their problems.

Common cause

Activists of the CPI(M) along with those of its affiliated organisations like the CITU, the AIDWA, the DYFI, the KVPS and the association of handicraft workers are all working under the common banner of ‘Vijayawada Poura Samkshema Sangham'. CPI (M) state executive and state Poura Samkshema Sangala vice-president Ch. Babu Rao told The Hindu that the socio-economic crusade should not be confused for a political campaign.

These were all small problems that could be resolved at the very the first level, Mr. Babu Rao said and cited G.O. 166 as the classic example. According to the G.O., house site pattas should be regularised but it was not happening. There were over 8,000 houses almost ready for occupation in Jakkampudi, but in several areas the people faced the threat of eviction on a daily basis.

“We have provided to the elected representatives and the district officials specific data, but nothing seems to be moving,” he said. In view of the lack of response from the departments concerned, the agitation will be intensified and an indefinite hunger strike will begin on Sunday, Mr. Babu Rao asserted.

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