MACHILIPATNAM: To drum up support for his party, YSR Congress chief YS Jaganmohan Reddy on Wednesday visited several villages in Machilipatnam mandal where the government intends to acquire lands for the construction of a sea port and creation of infrastructure for setting up port-based industries.
As the villages turned into a tinder box, ready to explode any time with the government proposing to acquire 32,000 acres of land, Jagan tried to make the farmers understand that he was there expressing solidarity with them and bring pressure on the government against land acquisition.
The police made elaborate security arrangements, with the villagers turning hostile to any visiting politician including those belonging to the Opposition.
After they attacked minister K Ravindra and Machilipatnam TDP K Narayana, they had given more or less the same treatment when APCC president N Raghuveera Reddy visited them.
While interacting with the villagers in Karagraharam, the YSRC supremo said that it was not fair for the government to snatch their livelihood. “Let the government construct the port in the land allotted by late YS Rajasekhara Reddy. Why does the government want so many acres of land and make the poor farmers cry?” he asked.
The farmers told him that they were not ready to give up their land, which is producing two crops, to the industries.
Wondering how they would eke out a livelihood after their land is snatched away, they vehemently opposed land acquisition by the government.
Responding to this, Jagan assured to protect the farmers’ interest when he comes to power in the next elections.
“It is cruel to take away the homes of villagers, too. Chandrababu Naidu is not acquiring lands for construction of port but to gift them to the private sector,” he alleged.
Later, the YSRC chief visited Thummacheruvu and Potlapalem villages where he listened to the woes of the farming community.