Bharat Bandh ends peacefully; normal life hit in Punjab, Haryana, Andhra Pradesh
The Bharat Bandh evoked mixed response as commercial activities and traffic were disrupted in some states
Eastern Mirror Desk
Dimapur, March 26 (EMN): The Bharat Bandh called by the Samkyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM) from 6 am to 6 pm on Friday, to protest the Centre’s farm laws, ended peacefully with no reports of untoward incidents.
The Bharat Bandh evoked mixed response as commercial activities and traffic were disrupted in some states while minimal or no impact was felt in most states.
It was reported road and rail services were hit in Punjab and Haryana as farmers blocked national highways, roads and railway tracks at several locations. Shops remained closed at several places in the two states in support of the Bharat Bandh. Public and private transport remained off the roads in Punjab, and at select districts in Haryana.
“Since morning, farmers in the two states gathered at several highways and roads, including in Bathinda, Ludhiana, Amritsar, Patiala, Mohali, Rohtak, Ferozepur, Pathankot, Jhajjar, Jind, Panchkula, Kaithal, Yamunanagar and Bhiwani districts,” reported PTI.
“Protesters squatted on railway tracks at several locations, including in Amritsar, Jalandhar, Ludhiana, Ferozepur, Ambala, Jind, Jhajjar, Panchkula and some other districts in the two states, leading to disruption of rail traffic,” it added. It led to cancellation of four Shatabdi trains, 35 other passenger trains detained and movement of 40 goods trains affected.
Some of the protesters blocked the Ambala-Delhi highway near Ambala Cantonment badly affecting the service on the route. A group of protesters squatted on railway tracks near Shahpur village, around five kilometres from Ambala Cantonment, due to which all the trains running between Delhi and Saharanpur were stranded, railway officials told the news agency.
Railway officials said that trains are running smoothly in the rest of the country, except in Punjab and Haryana.
Commercial establishments remained closed in Andhra Pradesh as Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party, Telugu Desam Party (TDP), Left parties and others extended support to the nationwide bandh.
However, it evoked partial response in other parts of the country. Protesters blocked roads and squatted on trail tracks at some places in Odisha and bus services were affected, while shops and markets remained closed. In Uttar Pradesh, protesters blocked roads in and around Muzaffarnagar.
The situation was normal in New Delhi too with most markets remained open and metro-road transport services not disturbed.
Farmer union leaders had earlier appealed for a peaceful protest, asking the protestors not to disrupt ambulances, vehicles carrying devotees and essential supplies, emergency vehicles and marriage processions.
Police personnel were deployed in adequate strength to maintain law and order, officials said.
Thousands of farmers, mainly from Punjab, Haryana and western Uttar Pradesh, have been camping at Singhu, Tikri and Ghazipur for the past four months, demanding complete repeal of the three farm laws passed by the Indian government.
Several rounds of talks and Centre’s offer to suspend the laws for up to 18 months had failed to break the deadlock.
(With inputs from PTI)