Seemandhra remains without power as strike continues

Last Updated: Wed, Oct 09, 2013 08:36 hrs

Hyderabad: Most parts of Seemandhra remained without power for the fourth consecutive day Wednesday with electricity employees continuing their indefinite strike to protest the Centre's decision to divide Andhra Pradesh.

Majority of 13 districts of Seemandhra (Rayalaseema and coastal Andhra) were still in dark, causing severe hardships to people. Medical services were the worst hit with many government and private hospitals postponing surgeries. Strike by doctors of government-run hospitals added to patients' woes.

Industrial production has come to a standstill while airports at Visakhapatnam and Vijayawada are running on back-up power. Movement of trains were affected due to the strike.

About 4,000 Megawatt generation has come to a halt due to the strike by the employees at all major thermal and hydel power plants.

The employees were continuing their strike following the failure of talks with Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy Tuesday night. The Joint Action Committee of Seemandhra electricity employees refused to end the strike without a firm assurance that the state would not be divided.

Another round of talks between the government and the JAC leaders is likely later in the day. The chief minister has appealed to employees to call off the strike in view of the hardships it is causing to the people.

The indefinite strike by over six lakh government employees, teachers and transport workers continued. Government offices and schools remain shut while buses of state-owned road transport corporation are off the roads since Aug 12.

Protests against the centre's decision continued in Seemandhra. Protestors including employees, teachers and students took our rallies, formed human chains, undertook hunger strikes and staged sit-ins to demand the centre to keep the state united.

Talks began in Hyderabad between leaders of striking government employees and the chief minister.

Kiran Reddy called the leaders of Andhra Pradesh Non-Gazetted Officers (APNGOs) Association for discussions after the talks between APNGOs Association and a group of ministers Tuesday failed to make a breakthrough.

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