Updated: October 12, 2021 2:27:07 am
The statewide bandh called by the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) allies to protest the killing of four farmers in Uttar Pradesh’s Lakhimpur Kheri evoked a mixed response across Maharashtra, with several commercial establishments remaining shut in Mumbai and Pune on Monday.
Life was largely unaffected in rural and semi-urban areas of the state.
In Mumbai, public transport was also affected as BEST buses as well as autorickshaws and taxis kept off the roads till 4 pm. Traffic on roads was very light. The suburban train services were strained with most office-goers facing difficulties in reaching government and private offices, which were largely unaffected by the bandh call.
In Pune, officials said the bandh received a mixed response. While shops in Market Yard and Lakshmi Road were closed in the morning hours, most resumed functioning after 4 pm, they said.
Joint commissioner of the Pune city police, Ravindra Shisave, said even though there were protests at certain locations, the law and order situation was peaceful in the city.
Shiv Sena unions and cadre ensured commercial establishments complied with the bandh in Mumbai. Some shops opened up late in the evening after the bandh ended at 4 pm.
The Navi Mumbai Agricultural Produce Market Committee, meanwhile, kept its operation closed.
BEST buses went off the roads early morning after incidents of stone pelting were reported. “A total of 11 BEST buses were damaged by protestors in stone pelting in areas like Dharavi, Mankhurd, Shivaji Nagar, Oshiwara, Deonar, Inorbit mall and Charkop. No bus conductor or driver was hurt. But passengers were on board the buses. We operated 1,833 buses today,” said Manoj Varade, BEST PRO.
The Mumbai Police registered at least three FIRs and detained over 200 workers from MVA allies Shiv Sena, Congress and NCP for allegedly blocking roads and damaging BEST buses. They were allowed to go after a few hours.
More than 200 people were detained under the Maharashtra Police Act. At Worli naka, Mayor Kishori Pednekar was seen protesting on the footpath with Sena workers.
Meanwhile, the Pune BJP unit condemned the protest, alleging in a press note that the “concern for farmers” was “fake”.
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