Special Correspondent

BANGALORE: Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa had to face the wrath of farmers here on Saturday over long hours of load shedding in villages.

When the Chief Minister was addressing farmers at Krishi Mela in the University of Agricultural Sciences, some of them interrupted his speech seeking proper electricity supply.

Though he reiterated his Government’s commitment to improving their living standards, a group of farmers said: “You first give us power… then talk about other things.” When policemen tried to intervene, the Chief Minister himself calmed down the enraged farmers and asked them to listen to him. He said: “You know the power problem existed for a long time. Soon after assuming office, I initiated measures to add 5,000 MW to the State grid. Within 100 days of assuming office I went to Chhattisgarh to sign an agreement with that State for setting up a 2000-MW power plant. I just want to tell you that I will try beyond my capacity to overcome the power crisis. We are ready to buy additional power even at an exorbitant cost of Rs. 10 a unit if it is available.”

Meanwhile, the KPCC has said that it will launch a protest across the State from November 19 against long hours of load shedding. In a statement issued here on Saturday, KPCC working president D.K. Shivakumar alleged that the Government was not sticking to the schedule of power supply hours announced by it.