The Bihar unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) appealed to commuters on Thursday to avoid train travels on Friday in view of the party's Rail Roko (stop trains) campaign to protest against the denial of special status to the state.
The demand for special status has received a fresh impetus in Bihar and neighbouring Jharkhand in the wake of the Centre recently approving a similar tag for Seemandhra, the residual Andhra Pradesh after carving out Telangana, in an election year.
Addressing a press conference in Patna, senior BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi regretted that the campaign may cause inconvenience.
Modi also requested passengers to cancel tickets booked for Friday and urged railway authorities to stop all trains entering Bihar to avoid any confrontation.
"Those commuters, having booked tickets in trains for tomorrow (Friday), are requested to consider cancelling the same to avoid facing difficulties due to the Rail Roko stir," he said.
The BJP leader, however, claimed that the agitation would be peaceful.
The saffron party's demonstration comes two days ahead of the Bihar shutdown called by the ruling Janata Dal (United), BJP's former ally, over the special status demand. Chief minister Nitish Kumar has also slammed the Centre for 'depriving' the state.
Apart from demanding special status, the BJP has asked the Union government to give a special package to Bihar for its development and also the facilities of tax holiday to enable it to attract new investments.
Criticising the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) for ignoring Bihar's long-pending demand, Modi promised the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance would provide a special status and package to Bihar if it was voted to power in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.
(With inputs from PTI)