Mangalore, June 22: Dozens of Bharatiya Janata Party activists on Friday courted arrest in the city by obstructing road traffic as part of the saffron party's nationwide 'Jail Bharo' agitation to protest the 'bad and corrupt governance' of the UPA Government at the Centre.
Led by Deputy Speaker of Karnataka Legislative Assemble N Yogish Bhat and MLC Ganesh Karnik, the BJP cadres took out a procession and put up road blockade at the strategic Mahaveera Circle at Pumpwell and courted arrest.
The agitation was also to press for the reduction of petrol price, protest hike in prices of essential commodities and step-motherly treatment meted out to non-Congress states by the Central Government.
Speaking ahead of staging blockade Mr Bhat said that Congress led UPA Government’s irresponsible economic policies have put common man into trouble and has made the life distress.
He charged that while Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is leading a "corrupt" government, Congress President Sonia Gandhi is protecting the corrupt.
"They both are encouraging corruption under the garb of honesty, in the eight years of the UPA government, scams and corruption has broken all records," he said.
The BJP alleged that despite record production of crops in the last eight years, prices of essential commodities have been constantly on the rise.
"The import of crude oil is about 85 per cent of the present consumption. However, during the NDA regime, it was 65 to 70 per cent because we focused on alternate sources like piped gas, bio-diesel and ethanol," Mr Bhat said.
He said that as part of nationwide agitation DK district unit of BJP is organising road blocks and Jail Bharo programme in all the five Vidhana Sabha constituencies.
Mr Karnik said that BJP is also taking public awareness campaign ‘Save Jammu Kashmir’ against the report of three member interlocutor tem on Kashmir issue from June 23 to July 6.
He alleged that UPA government has failed to take any measures to bring into force the unanimous decision taken in the parliament in 1994 urging Pakistan to take back its control over Pak Occupied Kashmir.
He said that people of the country should reject UPA.
The event marked the culmination of the 'Jan Sangarsh Abhiyan (Public Struggle Campaign)' of BJP, which began on June 7.
The saffron party had organised public meetings, protests and street marches in different parts of the country during this period to create awareness about these issues.
Meanwhile Congress has termed the ‘Jail Bharo’ agitation as a gimmick.
KPCC Secretary Ivan D’Souza told media persons that through this agitation, BJP leaders intended to give a taste of the jail experience to their workers as well.
“It is a fact that many prominent BJP leaders have already experienced confinement in jail on various charges of corruption and scandals and criminal activities. Many more are queuing up to go to jail. Now the same leaders have decided to send their workers to jails through a make-believe exercise to protest against price hike”, he said.
“The agitation is only a publicity gimmick and there is nothing that can be achieved from sending party workers to jail”, Mr D’Souza added.