Correspondent

Men are also supporting the cause

Lok Satta members criticise Telugu Desam Party chief

Kakinada: The campaign launched by the Lok Satta and its affiliate bodies, Mahila Satta and Yuva Satta against the belt shops, has evoked good response from the women all over the north coastal Andhra districts and also men have volunteered to extend their support, claimed S. Manorama, State Working Committee Member of Lok Satta.

Addressing a press conference here on Wednesday along with District Convenor of Mahila Satta K R Priyadarsini and Lok Satta Member Dr V Vasantha, Ms Manorama said that women were unanimous in expressing their support to the campaign and even ransacked a belt shop in anger at one village in Srikakulam district.

‘Confession’

Interestingly, a daily wage earner who is an addict to alcohol also confessed openly that alcohol, which is an evil is creating havoc in many families and pleaded the Mahila Satta leaders to intensify the stir till all the liquor shops were closed. Manorama said that the first phase of the campaign also known as ‘Prachara Yatra’, covering each district for two days demanding the closure of belt shops, started in Srikakulam on August 15, reached East Godavari on Tuesday. It will be concluded in Hyderabad after covering selected districts on October 2.

She said their aim was to eliminate all the 1.5 lakh belt shops and minimise the licensed shops to free the people from alcoholism.

Ankam Prabhakararao, former Minister and co-convenor of Lok Satta’s State Political Affairs Committee said that they would launch the second phase of the Prachara Yatra soon, aiming at removal of all the bars and roadside liquor shops. Y D Ramarao, State Working Committee Member said that TDP leader Chandrababu Naidu had no moral right to talk about the belt shops, as he was responsible for starting the shops.