Friday, July 9, 2010

Lok Satta condemns liquor lobby Attacks on party activists

The Lok Satta Party today condemned the arrest of and physical assault on its activists, now on a State-wide campaign demanding restriction of liquor consumption, including closure of illegal outlets (belt shops) and sitting rooms attached to licensed shops.

The Ongole police arrested nearly 40 Lok Satta activists including State party General Secretary Katari Srinivasa Rao, district party President Allu Siva Ramesh Reddy, State Yuva Satta leaders Dasari Ratnam and P. Sivaji as they attempted to prevent open drinking at a licensed shop on the night of July 8. The police would not heed the Lok Satta leaders’ assertion that they could arrest people violating law under Section 43 of the Criminal Procedure Code and hand them over to the authorities for follow up action. The police later released them on instructions from the Superintendent of Police.

On July 9, liquor vendor supporters assaulted Narasaraopet Mahila Satta President G. Nirmala Bose as she and other activists tried to close down unauthorized liquor outlets in Vennadevi village of Sattenapalli mandal in Guntur district.

Giving this information, Lok Satta Party leaders Bhisetty Babji, V. Laxman Balaji and V. Vijayender Reddy said in a statement that the incidents mirrored the deep roots struck by the liquor lobby in the State with the support of the State Government and traditional political parties or ‘Sara parties’ standing for sampradaya rajakiya pakshalu.

The Lok Satta Party leaders said that far from cooperating with Lok Satta activists in enforcing laws, the police and excise wings have chosen to ignore the liquor lobby’s illegal activities.

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