Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) strongly denounces the attempts of the BJP government in Uttar Pradesh to unbundle the Purvanchal Vidyut Vitaran Nigam Ltd, in a bid to privatise it. The government has decided to divide the distribution system into three entities, which will then have to bid for electricity distribution. The government’s decision to privatise electricity sector will lead to increase in the electricity rates and make electricity, an essential service for people, out of reach to the poor, particularly those in the remote rural and tribal areas.

CITU also condemns the vindictive attitude of the UPPCL (Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation Limited) management, which is trying to intimidate and threaten the leaders of the joint struggle committee, instead of discussing with them. The UPPCL has issued notice to 18 leaders of the joint struggle committee threatening them of imprisonment under ESMA, National Disaster Management Act etc

The Vidyut Karmachari Samyukt Sangharsh Samiti, a joint struggle committee of electricity employees and engineers in the state has opposed this and decided to launch a broad movement against privatisation of electricity distribution. It has served notice to the UP government and the management on 24th August and decided to hold protest meetings every working day in all the districts that are covered by the Purvanchal Vidyut Vitaran Nigam, in the first phase of the agitation. These protest meetings are being conducted with huge participation of electricity employees and engineers. Wide campaign is also being conducted among the consumers and the people in general to create awareness about the outcome of unbundling and privatisation on their lives.

CITU congratulates the joint struggle committee for its fearless struggle against the anti worker anti people privatisation of electricity and its determination to continue with its second phase of struggle of indefinite strike and jail bharo to stop privatisation. CITU fully supports its struggle and stands in solidarity with the electricity employees and engineers in UP.

CITU calls upon all its units across the country to send solidarity messages to the Vidyut Karmachari Samyukt Sangharsh Samiti of Uttar Pradesh supporting their anti privatisation struggle. CITU also calls upon the people of UP and the entire country to support the struggle in all possible ways.

The struggle against privatisation of electricity is not the struggle of the electricity employees alone. It will impact all sections of society, the common consumers, the peasants, industries and industrial workers. But the BJP government at the centre is going ahead with the Electricity Amendment Bill 2020, which will lead to steep increase in the electricity charges. Thus it is imperative on all sections of the people to oppose this Act along with the electricity employees.

CITU demands the BJP government to immediately withdraw the disastrous Electricity Amendment Bill. It calls upon the people to come together against privatisation of electricity and tell the BJP government in unambiguous terms – ‘We Will Not Allow Privatisation of Electricity in Any Manner’.

Issued by:
Tapan Sen
General Secretary

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