The police foiled an attempt by the Left parties to take out a rally to protest against the public hearing by the AP Electricity Regulatory Commission (APERC) here on Saturday.

Hundreds of CPI, CPI (M), CPI (ML) New Democracy and other activists gathered at the Ekasila Park and proceeded towards the Zilla Parishad hall where the public hearing was slated. However, the police prevailed over and dispersed the crowds. Some were taken into custody.

Chaos prevailed for most part of the time at the hearing, with leaders of CPI, CPI (M), TDP and others squatting on the floor, raising slogans and demanding cancellation of the hearing. They were protesting against the exorbitant hike in power tariff, and the arrest of their party workers outside the meeting hall.

Policemen stormed the meeting hall and forcibly evicted all the leaders – T. Srinivasa Rao of CPI, G. Nagaiah, R. Prakash Reddy and A. Baswa Reddy of TDP, and several others.

The meeting resumed with TRS MLA T. Harish Rao making a detailed presentation on loopholes in the energy policy of the State government and on how the poor and middle classes were being burdened with lopsided decisions.

He pointed out the irregularities that took place in power purchase agreements and how the officials colluded with the private companies - GMR and Lanco at the cost of the public welfare.

“The State Government has burdened the people with Rs. 34,540 crore during the past three years. Had it focused on corruption and irregularities, people would have been saved from the burden,” he pointed out and urged the Commission chairman to order an inquiry into the allegations being levelled by the Opposition parties.

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