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Mixed response to ‘Bharat Bandh’ in NE

Mixed response to ‘Bharat Bandh’ in NE
Bandh supporters blocking roads during Bharat Bandh in Imphal on Monday. (NP)
Guwahati/Agartala/ Imphal/ Aizawl, Sep 10 (PTI/IANS/Agencies) | Publish Date: 9/10/2018 12:30:50 PM IST

The six-hour ‘Bharat Bandh’ called by Congress to protest “rising fuel prices, inflation and a weakening of rupee” evoked a mixed response in Northeastern states on Monday. 

IMPHAL: Normal life was hit in Imphal with market places and educational institutes remained closed and commercial vehicles stayed off the roads in response to the ‘Bharat Bandh’ called by opposition Congress.

At some places in Imphal and other valley districts, bandh supporters confronted with police as the later used force in their bid to open the roads as Congress workers came out on the streets and enforced the bandh.

The strike was by and large peaceful in the state as no major violent incident was reported from any part of the state.

The bandh severely hit normal business activities in Imphal’s Khwairamband Keithel, Paona Bazar and Thangal Bazar, as almost all shops and business establishments remained down their shutters.

Oil pumps remained close. Government and public undertaking offices were functioned with thin staff attendances

AICC general secretary (NE in-charge) Dr Vijayluxmi Sadho, Congress MP Bhubaneshwar Kalita were among other national Congress leaders who took part in the rally led by MPCC president TN Hoakip, former chief minister O Ibobi Singh, former deputy chief minister who is also Congress Working Committee member Gaikhangam.

 (Correspondent)

SHILLONG: In Meghalaya, the bandh did not have any impact but the opposition Congress in the state slammed the NPP-led government for its failure to deal with the fuel hike, even as leader of opposition Mukul Sangma said that the Conrad Sangma government was yet to learn the “art of governance”.

Business continued as usual and life was normal, a government official said. Government and bank establishments and educational institutions were open and there was no impact of the bandh at all, the official said.

However, Congress workers and senior leaders including former Meghalaya Chief Minister and Leader of Opposition Mukul Sangma, former Goa Chief Minister Luzinho Falerio, who is also Congress General Secretary in-charge North Eastern state and former Union Minister Vincent H Pala staged a protest march from Khyndai Lad to Congress Bhavan protesting against price rise in the country. (Correspondent)

AGARTALA: Around 400 bandh supporters were detained in different parts of Tripura Monday for trying to disrupt normal life, a senior police officer said.

The bandh call by opposition Congress and Left parties over spiralling fuel prices and rupee depreciation, however, failed to evoke much response in the BJP-ruled state, he said.

All government offices, including the civil secretariat, conducted business as usual and public vehicles plied on roads like any other day, Officiating AIG (Law and Order) Subrata Chakraborty said.

More than 400 picketers were detained for trying to enforce bandh,” he told PTI.

Some business establishments chose to remain shut in the state capital and neighbourhood areas, but normal life wasn’t affected in any way due to the bandh, he added.

GUWAHATI: Normal life was hit in BJP-ruled Assam. Congress workers attempted to stop movement of trains by squatting on the railway tracks and tried to block national highways and main roads across the state by burning tyres and setting up bamboo barricades, police said.

In Guwahati, Assam Congress president and Rajya Sabha MP Ripun Bora along with party in-charge for the state Harish Rawat led hundreds of sloganeering party workers during a rally this morning. The protestors tried to forcibly enter the state secretariat, officials said.

However, they were prevented by the police and security forces from entering the secretariat. The protestors were taken into preventive custody for violating section 144 of CrPC and for not giving prior information to the authorities about their protest rally. The agitators were later released, officials said.

AIZAWL: Shops, offices and educational institutions were open in Congress-ruled Mizoram on Monday as there was no impact of the ‘Bharat Bandh’ anywhere in the state, officials said.

Neither the Mizoram Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) nor the opposition parties joined the nation-wide bandh called by the Congress and supported by 21 political parties protesting against the unprecedented rise in fuel prices.

MPCC vice president and state Home Minister R Lalzirliana told PTI that not even a meeting on the issue was convened and no discussion was held to join the ‘Bharat Bandh’ in the state.

However, the MPCC would organise a token sit-in in front of Vanapa Hall in the afternoon in the state capital.

Congress Legislature Party (CLP) secretary Lalrinmawia Ralte, political secretary to Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla, said the matter had not been deliberated in the meetings of the MPCC.

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