Visakhapatnam Steel Plant employeessupported by 16 trade unions continued their protest against the privatization of the steel plant for the second day on Friday.The employees took out a massive motorcycle rally from the steel plant to the Gandhi statue at RTC Complex where they staged a sit-in and addressed a rally.

The dharna was attended by Vizag and Anakapalle Lok Sabha members MVV Satyanrayana and K Satyavathi, Gajuwaka MLA Tippala Nagi Reddy and TDP MLA Velagapudi Ramakrishnababu.

State president of CITU Ch Narsinga Rao, CPI State joint secretary JV Satyanarayana Murthy and president of Steel Plant Employees Union J Ayodhyaram were also present.

Addressing the gathering, Lok Sabha member MVV Satyanaryana said YSRCP was opposed to the privatization of Vizag Steel Plant and the issue would be taken up with chief minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy.

`We will stage dharna at the main gate of the steel plant and block the privatization in the Parliament. Elected representatives would support the agitation programme of trade union and steel plant employees," the MP said.

Lok Sabha member from Anakapalle Dr. K Satyanvati said the steel plant has been the pride of Andhra Pradesh her party would not allow central government's privatization move.

Gajuwaka MLA Tippala Nagi Reddy said the privatization of steel plant would spell doom for the BJP at the centre. Jana Sena leader Kona Tata Rao said his party would take the issue to the national capital and fight till the proposal is dropped.

CITU State president Ch Narsinga Rao said the central government, which failed to extend financial support during losses, has not right to privatize the steel plant.`People sacrificed a lot for the steel plant. If need be, people will again render sacrifices to save the steel plant,'' Narsinga Rao said.

Union president J Ayodhyaram said the steel plant has been providing Rs 42,000 crore annually in the form of dividends and taxes to the central and state governments. For expansion, the plant spent Rs 18,000 crore and created 5,000 new jobs. It is a conspiracy to privatize the steel plant, the biggest factory in Andhra Pradesh, he added.

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