Over 200 supporters of united opposition parties, including Jharkhand Mukti Morch (JMM) were arrested across the Bokaro while 537 in Dhanbad when they were trying to enforce ‘bandh’, protesting against the amendments to the land acquisition bill brought in by the BJP-led state government on Thursday.
The protesters were detained at different places in camp jail across the twin districts during the one-day Jharkhand bandh, later they were released in the evening.
Bandh has a minimal impact on life across the twin districts; failed to create an impact on the road as well as rail transportation, but few long route buses did not ply, stand still ahead bandh.
No untoward incidents were reported while fewer protesters tried to disrupt railway transportation in Bokaro and Dhanbad but failed.
Bandh called by united opposition parties does not affect on productions in industrial units, including BSL, ONGC, BPSCL, SRU, Dalmia Cement, Vedanta Steel including others. Most of the shops, private offices were found remain opened.
Meanwhile, JMM central Committee member Mantu Yadav claimed, ‘bandh was impactful’.
Though bandh saw a mixed response across the Jharkhand, no untoward incident was reported from anywhere as the administration had pressed into action about 5,000 police personnel to deal with violence of any kind during the dawn-to-dusk protest. Most of the financial institutions and banks remained unaffected during the day while the worst-hit were the long distance commuters. Looking at the safety of children most of the schools of the city had already declared holiday on the day. Majority of shops or fuel stations fearing vandalism from the bandh supporters preferred to put their shutters down in the first half but resumed their services as the day progressed.
State police spokesman and IG Ashish Batra said in the evening that total 18973 persons have been detained by the police from different parts of the State. As per the reports, no loss to property or life took place anywhere. Long distance buses operating from Ranchi to places like Palamu, Hazaribagh, Jamshedpur and others remained off roads putting passengers in great deal of difficulty. At couple of places protestors tried to block rail traffic but could not.
In the Capital, auto and city bus operations remained shut on most of the routes barring a few in which passengers complained about unreasonable fare being demanded. Situation, however, normalised in the afternoon. The district administration was on its toes since morning. A large numbers of police personnel were seen on the streets everywhere in Ranchi to counter the bandh supporters who at some places were chased away as well.
Police to keep the situation under control detained about 600 persons in the city and put them in camp jails before releasing later on. No incident of violence or vandalism has been reported from any part except some acts of tyre burning on streets at Doranda.
Prominent leaders of the political parties supporting the shut down descended on the streets to oppose the changes done in the land Act. JMM leader Hemant Soren led the protest and sat on dharna at Sarjana Chowk while JVM supremo Babulal Marandi and principal general secretary Pradeep Yadav with large number of supporters marched from Dibdih to Sujata Chowk. Both the leaders were detained by the police.
Congress leaders starting from Pradesh Congress Committee chief Ajoy Kumar to MLAs Alamgir Alam, Sukhdeo Bhagat, former MP Subodh Kant Sahay and several other office-bearers and supporters participated in the bandh at the Main Road and Firayalal. The leaders were boarded into buses deployed by the police and taken to makeshift jails. Left parties also participated into the act and marched on the street with banners written with anti-land acquisition slogans.
Over 2,300 bandh supporters courted arrest in Jamshedpur and taken to Sakchi thana from where they were later released on PR bond. Shops, showrooms, malls and other business establishments remained closed. Though banks remained opened but officials worked inside with shutters down. Petroleum outlets too remained closed.
Over 450 long distance buses for various destinations did not ply from the Sitaramdera bus terminus. Security was beefed up at Tatanagar railway station as the bandh failed to have any impact on trains operating on Tatanagar route. Schools, private as well as Government remained opened but most vans, pool cars and autos which ferry children did not ply.