Opposition backed shutdown hits Bihar
Trains were blocked and trucks and buses were off the roads in Bihar as a daylong shutdown called by opposition parties to protest the killing of three people in police firing last week came into effect Monday.
Workers of opposition parties blocked railway tracks and forcibly stopped trains at various stations to enforce the shutdown against the firing in Madhubani Monday that also injured over a dozen people. Trucks and buses too remained off the road in the state, police said.
The parties supporting the state-wide shutdown include the Rashtriya Janata Dal, Lok Janshakti Party, Congress and Nationalist Congress Party as well as the Communist Party of India (CPI), Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) and the Communist Party of India-Marxist-Leninist (CPI-ML).
"Several long route trains as well as passenger trains were stopped by bandh supporters and the road traffic was badly hit across the state," a police official said.
Trains were forcibly stopped at major railway stations like Patna, Gaya, Jehanabad and Darbhanga, police said.
According to East Central Railway zone officials in Hajipur, about 20 km from here, thousands of passengers were stranded at various railway stations.
Workers of opposition parties blocked railway tracks in Nalanda, Gaya, Jehanabad, Darbhanga, Hajipur, Bhagalpur and Saharsa districts, disrupting train services, an official said.
Besides, traffic was disrupted on national and state highways at various places. In Patna, busy roads like Ashok Rajpath, Exhibition Road, Bailey Road and Fraser Road were blocked by the shutdown supporters, police said.
All private schools and colleges in the city remained closed in view of the strike.
Additional Director General (Police Headquarters) Ravinder Kumar said additional police forces were deployed in several areas to avoid any untoward incident during the shutdown.
Two youth were killed Friday and over a dozen people injured after police opened fire at an irate mob in Madhubani town. Another youth injured in police action Saturday died Sunday.
The town has been simmering since a headless body was found almost a fortnight ago. The family members of a missing youth, Prashant Kumar, claimed that the body was his and demanded that it be handed over to them -- but the police remained unrelenting.
Hundreds of people joined the family members in pressing the demand. But when police still refused to give in, the mob turned violent and indulged in violent protests Friday and Saturday.
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has ordered a judicial inquiry into the incident and transferred the district magistrate and superintendent of police with immediate effect.