THE BANDH call given by the Akhil Bharatiya Udyog Vyapar Mandal to protest police failure to nab killers of petrol dealer Agast Kumar Agrawal failed to evoke widespread response though traders blocked the busy Hazratganj crossing for over two hours in protest.
Despite the call for a half-day bandh, business was as usual in most of the markets, although Vyapar Mandal claimed the bandh was total. Around 300 traders, led by their leader Sandeep Bansal, threw traffic out of gear at the Hazratganj crossing and staged dharna when police administration stopped them from proceeding further. They wanted to visit the CM’s residence to hand over a memorandum to him.
As per their pre-announced programme, traders belonging to various local vyapar mandal units took out processions from different city markets and later gathered at the Qaiserbagh petrol pump from where they marched to the CM’s residence, shouting slogans against growing crime against the trading community. But the police deployed there stopped the traders at Hazratganj crossing. The police had to use mild force to control the agitated traders who sat on dharna in the middle of the road in Hazratganj when not allowed to go beyond. They continued to sit there till they were arrested and taken to the police lines at about 4 pm.
In a press statement, Akhil Bhartiya Udyog Vyapar Mandal convener, Sandeep Bansal condemned police for using force against the demonstrators. He said traders went sat on dharna for three hours on the road but no senior officer came there to meet them. “This shows how mafia were controlling the entire government machinery,” he said. Bansal said even 14 days after Agast Kumar Agrawal was killed outside his house, police had failed to nab the killers.