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Mrunal Manmay Dash

Members of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) undertook a march up to the Odisha Assembly in Bhubaneswar on Wednesday protesting the hike in electricity tariff in the State.

This protest march comes at a time when the monsoon session of the State legislature is in progress and the Opposition parties are leaving left no stones unturned to corner the ruling BJD over several burning issues, ranging from the death of ACF Soumya Ranjan Mohapatra to the alleged irregularities in Covid management in the State.

Hundreds of BJP members led by the Bhubaneswar District President, Babu Singh, set out from Master Canteen Square in the afternoon to gherao the State Assembly building at Lower PMG. On their way, the protesters scuffled with the police when the latter tried them to stop from jumping the barricades put around the State Assembly.

Singh told reporters that the Odisha government is hand in glove with the OERC (Odisha Electricity Regulatory Commission) to hike the electricity tariff as and when they decide.

“When the people of Odisha are already facing the wrath of COVID 19 the State government’s move to hike the electricity bill by 50 paise has put rub salts on their wounds. It has put an additional burden on households,” Singh said.

Accusing the Energy Minister of cheating the public, Singh said that the minister had assured to review the hiked tariffs during the last Assembly session. “In the last four months he has done nothing in this regard,” he said.

Singh also threatened to intensify protests if the government did not pay heed to their demand for a reconsideration of power tariff in the State.

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