Special Correspondent

‘Frequent power shutdowns have thrown normal life out of gear'

MANGALORE: Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Assembly Siddaramaiah on Saturday criticised the State Government for unscheduled power shutdowns, which had adversely affected the lives of the people. The power crisis had led to scarcity of drinking water in many places, he said.

Farmers were unable to use their irrigation pumpsets. “Nobody knows when the power supply is cut or restored,” he said. The Government, which had promised to increase power production by 5,000 MW in five years, had failed to generate even 1 MW of power, he said and demanded a White Paper on the issue.

The Government had failed to capitalise on the good rains that occurred last year. Thermal power plants, which frequently suffered breakdowns, were not functioning efficiently. Stating that milk procurement had declined after G. Somashekar Reddy took over as Chairman of the Karnataka Milk Federation, he said the State was heading towards a “milk drought”.

Milk prices in Dakshina Kannada and a few other districts had been increased by 25 per cent, which was not acceptable. Mr. Siddaramaiah criticised the master plan for Mangalore saying it would only benefit developers.