MLAs ride bicycles, carts to work

To protest the hikes in petrol and diesel prices, opposition legislators in Andhra Pradesh on Tuesday went to the state assembly on bicycles and bullock carts.

Led by leader of Opposition N. Chandrababu Naidu, the legislators belonging to the Telugu Desam Party (TD), Communist Party of India and Communist Party of India-Marxist came to the assembly on bicycles and bullock carts to demand rollback of the price hike announced by union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee during his budget speech on last Friday.

It was a joint protest by the legislators of three parties while the lone legislator of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) G. Kishan Reddy pushed his motorcycle to reach the assembly.

Holding flags of their respective parties, members of the assembly took out the rally from NTR Ghat, demanding that the government immediately roll back the hike in prices of petrol and diesel.

"The hike in fuel prices has burdened the common man. We are demanding that the central government immediately rolls back the hike," Naidu told newsmen. The TDP chief rode both the bullock cart and bicycle.

Speaker N. Kiran Kumar Reddy rejected adjournment motions moved by the four parties for a debate on the price hike.

The opposition legislators stalled the proceedings demanding an immediate debate. Naidu urged Chief Minister K. Rosaiah to move a resolution in the house urging the central government to withdraw the hike.

The TDP chief said the fuel price hikes would add to the misery of common man who was already reeling under the impact of rising prices of essential commodities.

Amid the pandemonium, the speaker adjourned the house for 15 minutes.

TDP, CPI and CPI-M had Monday decided to launch a joint protest over the price rise. The two communist parties had urged TDP to join their national protest. As part of this, they decided to stage a sit-in in all mandals (blocks) across the state and also at Indira Park here March 6.(IANS)

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