In a rare display of unity, capitalists and the working class came together, under the umbrella of the Joint Action Committee of micro, small and medium enterprises, in protest against the recurring power cuts in the state by staging a dharna near Indira Park here on Wednesday.
The representatives of the joint action committee (JAC) took out a rally from Baghlingampally to Indira Park, where they staged the sit-in.
A large number of entrepreneurs of small and medium scale enterprises along with their workers participated in the dharna against the erratic power supply to the factories.
The JAC demanded that 12 percent of the total power generated in the state be allocated to the small-scale sector.
To explain the severity of the power crisis, they stated that close to 50 percent of the seven lakh small scale industries in the state were on the verge of closure due to lack of power.
Addressing the gathering, FAPCCI representative Devendra Surana remarked that the meeting was held to mark the first 'anniversary' of power cuts.
The SSIs began facing power cuts from September, 2011.
Several politicians, including BJP state president G Kishan Reddy, M Veeraiah of the CPM, Nayani Narasimha Reddy of the TRS, Janak Prasad of the YSRC and Bojjala Gopala Krishna Reddy of the TDP expressed their solidarity to the protest and said that they would raise the power crisis issue in the forthcoming monsoon session.
JAC convener MM Reddy, leaders APK Reddy and K Ramadevi presented some more depressing statistics.
According to them, more than 11,000 small-scale industries in the state have been already closed down due to the power shortage.
If the power crisis does not end, it will hit around 45 lakh people, and their dependants, employed in the small and medium industries.
"We are forced to pay power bills even when we donot use power.
Even when there is no power for 15 days a month, we have to pay 80 percent of the contracted demand.
Added to this, we have to pay full salary to the workers for the 15 work days and also pay the interest on our bank loans," an industrialist complained