Five residents of Bhagwat Nagar under the banner of Adarsh-Bhagwat-Jaiprakash Nagar Morcha on Thursday went on a one-day hunger strike near Amarnath temple, Agamkuan area, to protest against the move by the Patna Muncipal Corporation to demolish 336 houses in the area in pursuance of a Supreme Court order.
Hundreds of people, including men, women, children, besides some school students, joined the ongoing 'dharna' for the third consecutive day.
Kumhrar legislator Arun Kumar Sinha reached the dharna site, but withdrew in the face of the ire he faced from local residents. However, he assured the protesters to find some solution to the problem.
Officials of Patna Municipal Corporation and the district administration, who had gone to Bhagwat Nagar to carry out the SC order to demolish 136 identified houses on Wednesday, had to retreat due to strong protests by residents of Bhagwat Nagar, Jaiprakash Nagar and Adarsh Nagar.
Patna City ASP Chandan Kushwaha said, a named FIR had been lodged against 98 persons for Wednesday's violence in the area. "They took law into their own hands, which is not acceptable. The administration was just trying to implement the apex court order," he added.
Adarsh-Bhagwat-Jaiprakash Nagar Morcha president, Saroj Kant Tripathi said, "Five persons decided to sit on a one-day hunger strike to keep the momentum going. We are here to 'do or die'. A large number of people, including men, women and children are joining us. We will not leave our homes at any cost," he added.
He said, as per his knowledge, the administration was engaged in planning further action on a larger scale. "We have alerted everybody. More than 50,000 people are passing sleepless nights, ever since the order was passed. They are in panic, but will not relent unless this nightmare passes. They have left their work, even eating. Women are praying for some divine intervention," Tripathi said.
Tripathi said, students of St Joseph's School and other schools would form a human chain in the area to send across message to officials of PMC and the administration. "We have sent a fax letter to the President but not received any reply. We have also decided to protest the adhikar rally," he added,
The Supreme Court had directed the Patna Municipal Corporation (PMC) on September 8 to demolish the houses and clear the 'encroached area' by September 26.