Visakhapatnam

Left parties take out ‘sand march’

Mounting pressure: Activists of Left parties staging a protest at the Mudasarlova sand yard in Visakhapatnam.

Mounting pressure: Activists of Left parties staging a protest at the Mudasarlova sand yard in Visakhapatnam.   | Photo Credit: K_R_DEEPAK

‘Pay ₹10,000 a month to construction workers who lost jobs’

Left parties took out a march as part of a State-wide protest over sand scarcity on Wednesday, a day ahead of the beginning of Andhra Pradesh Government’s ‘Sand Week’ and TDP president N. Chandrababu Naidu’s fast.

The activists of the CPI and the CPI(M) took out the march from Ramakrishnapuram to Mudasarlova sand stock point, demanding that the government must make sand available at ₹150 a tonne. They also want that the construction workers who had been rendered jobless owing to paucity of sand be paid ₹10,000 a month as assistance.

Ex gratia sought

Describing the suicide of 37 workers owing to sand scarcity as ‘unprecedented’, they demanded that the government must pay an ex gratia of ₹25 lakh to their kin each, apart from a job.

CPI(M) city secretary B. Ganga Rao and his CPI counterpart M. Paidiraju led the protest raising slogans in support of bringing sand within the reach of the common man, provision of free sand to the poor, and increasing the reaches and stock points.

“Apart from one lakh construction workers, the mutha, auto, push-cart workers and those working in cement and iron shops are also facing hardships as the construction works have come a grinding halt owing to shortage of sand. The promise of opening sand stock point in each Assembly constituencies is yet to be materialised,” said Mr. B. Ganga Rao.

The protesters also alleged that even as a tonne of sand was priced at ₹375, the cost went up to ₹1,500 till it got delivered at the doorsteps of the customers. Online booking was also causing hardship to people, they added. CPI(M) leaders R.K.S.V. Kumar, B. Jagan and CPI’s B. Venkataramana and A. Vimala participated in the march.

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Printable version | Jul 10, 2020 5:44:56 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Visakhapatnam/left-parties-take-out-sand-march/article29966654.ece

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