BJP workers detained, bandh disrupts normal life in Maha
Senior BJP leader Kirit Somaiya along with many party workers was detained in Mumbai today when they were staging a rail blockade even as bandh supporters indulged in stone pelting at several places and damaged 12 buses in Pune to enforce the nationwide strike called by the opposition NDA and Left parties to protest fuel price hike.Updated: Jul 05, 2010 10:47 IST
Senior BJP leader Kirit Somaiya along with many party workers was detained in Mumbai on Monday when they were staging a rail blockade even as bandh supporters indulged in stone pelting at several places and damaged 12 buses in Pune to enforce the nationwide strike called by the opposition NDA and Left parties to protest fuel price hike.
BJP workers were also detained at Mulund station in Mumbai as they stopped trains.
Minor incidents of stone pelting on local trains were reported from suburban Borivali and Kandivali in response to the bandh.
In Pune, 12 city buses were damaged by activists trying to enforce the bandh.
The buses plying in Kothrud and Pimpri area were stopped and stoned, damaging window panes, a spokesman of the Pune municipal corporation said.
In view of the bandh, very few people ventured out in the early hours and several educational institutions in Mumbai were closed.
Authorities have deployed about 40,000 police personnel on the streets of Mumbai to avert any incidence of violence.
Opposition parties, which have called for the bandh, have described the hike in petroleum products as "unjustified" and demanded a rollback.
Samajwadi Party, Shiv Sena, MNS and other smaller non-Congress-NCP parties in Maharashtra are supporting the bandh called by the NDA and Left parties.
BJP State unit president Sudhir Mungattiwar will lead the protests in Mumbai while Leader of opposition in the legislative assembly Eknath Khadse will be in Pune. Leader of opposition in the Legislative council Pandurang Phundkar will take part in the protests at Aurangabad.
The state government has said that adequate security personnel have been stationed at railway stations, bus stops airports and important roads.
"I appeal people to come out. We have taken all security measures to ensure no untoward incident takes place. Anyone who takes law into their hands and attempts to paralyse the city shall be dealt with strictly," warned Mumbai Police Commissioner Sanjeev Dayal.
In Mumbai, additional BEST buses will be plying on the roads while elsewhere in the state, Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) buses will be pressed into service.
The government has said that additional bus services will be pressed into service from airports and important railway stations for the benefit of passengers who arrive in the city from long distant trains.
As the suburban trains are likely to be targeted by protestors supporting bandh, adequate number of railway policemen would be deployed at stations for smooth functioning of railway service, police said.
"We have asked our staff to be on high alert," said a Western Railways spokesperson, adding that "motormen will also be guarded by security men as the protestors may target them to derail train services."
First Published: Jul 05, 2010 10:44 IST