Frayed tempers of Sikh protesters, who are infuriated over the alleged desecration of Guru Granth Sahib, showed no signs of abating with agitators, including women, blocking key routes across Punjab on Monday.
In Jalandhar, clashes took place between the shopkeepers and the protesters.
Trouble started brewing when some protesters forced the shopkeepers to shut down their shops at Rainak Bazaar and Mai Hira Gate.The shopkeepers called in the police but as the problem escalated, they started pelting stones at each other As the police forced failed to control the situation, anti-riots force was called in.
Major traffic jam was witnessed at the PAP chowk. Meanwhile, protesters blocked Jalandhar-Hoshiapur road near Adampur. Jalandhar-Kapurthala road also remained closed.
Tension prevailed in the border district of Tarn Taran that remained cut off from the rest of the state as the protesters continued to block roads.
Meanwhile, shopkeepers also staged a protest against the police for its failure in ensuring their safety. They also met senior superintendent of police (SSP) Manmohan Sharma on Monday and demanded action against protesters who forced them to shut shops. But despite his assurance, majority of shopkeepers kept their shops closed.
The dharna on Beas river bridge near Goindwal Sahib continued to break the link of Tarn Taran district from Doaba region. Similarly, due the dharna on the Harike bridge, which entered the fifth day, the border district got totally cut off from Malwa region.
Amritsar braced for complete shutdown with schools and colleges remaining closed on Monday. Meanwhile, protesters continued with the blockade in and around Amritsar for the third consecutive day.
Meanwhile, protesters also resumed traffic blockades at several locations in Bathinda district on Monday hitting the traffic badly.
The protesters defying the call by panthic organisations resumed road blockades at Talwandi Sabo, Goniana, Kotshamir, Maur and Rampura Phul on Monday morning. The road blockade at Rampura Phul badly affected the traffic on Bathinda-Chandigarh road. The protesters would continue the blockade at all locations till evening except Goniana where they lifted the blockade at 1 pm.