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Ukku stir to be converted into a political agitation

Visakhapatnam: Trade union leaders and leaders of political parties have decided to convert Ukku stir into a political agitation. Speaking at a round-table meet on Monday, Gajuwaka MLA Tippala Nagireddy said there was a need to stop the Centre from selling Visakhapatnam Steel Plant (VSP) by taking up a strong agitation.

Based on the decisions made by the Union government, an action plan should be prepared to save the VSP, the MLA said. Despite a series of protests, Nagireddy pointed out that the Centre was stubborn on its privatisation move. “There is a need to get more support for the agitation in order to mount pressure on the Centre,” he informed.

Sharing his views, 78th ward corporator B Ganga Rao said ‘Ukku Praja Garjana’ is scheduled on January 30. “The roar and pain of the protesters would be taken forward to the next level. People from all sections of society should extend their support for the same,” he appealed.

The 72nd ward corporator A J Stalin said that there was a need to stop privatisation as Visakha Ukku is the right of the people. Corporators K Govinda Reddy, Lella Koteswara Rao, Gandham Srinu, M Mutyala Naidu, Bonda Jagan, Palla Srinu, trade union leaders, among others took part.

Meanwhile, expressing solidarity with the ongoing Ukku stir, protesters joined a demonstration at Pendurthi junction in Visakhapatnam. In the stir organised by the CPI, union leaders and workers of Visakhapatnam Steel Plant raised slogans and stressed on need for continuing the agitation until the Central government withdrew its decision to privatise VSP.

They said that Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy should take concrete measures to save VSP from passing on to the private players. The CPI leaders said that protecting steel plant should be above political lines and demanded the support of all the political parties and stakeholders to make the ensuing ‘Karmika Garjana’ scheduled on January 30 a success.

As a part of the Ukku agitation, the ‘garjana’ aims at intensifying the stir and showing the strength of the workers’ voice in protecting the VSP.

Among others, former TDP minister Bandaru Satyanarayana, GVMC floor leader Peela Srinivas and TDP senior leader Reddy Narayana Rao extended support to the demonstration.