Shiv Sena workers attacked autorickshaw drivers in Maharashtra’s Thane today, video shows a day after the Maha Vikas Aghadi government implemented a bandh in solidarity with farmers in Uttar Pradesh, a week after farmers in UP’s Lakhimpur Kheri Eight people were killed in violence during the protests.
The men were seen patrolling the roads and stopping autorickshaw drivers in Thane district. He also slapped a driver. Some of them had sticks, which they used to beat the autorickshaw drivers passing by. Some of the three-wheelers had passengers who were seen to be moving.
Public buses also remained off the roads for most of the day after some people pelted stones, news agency PTI reported. Bus services resumed after the bandh ended at around 4 pm.
State Railway Police Commissioner Kaiser Khalid said protesters were seen at three railway stations in Thane, Mulund and Vikhroli. Khalid tweeted, “Protesters have demonstrated at Thane, Mulund and Vikhroli railway stations. Officials have advised them not to enter the station premises or cause inconvenience to passengers. They have since left the city.”
A union of traders in Maharashtra opposed the bandh on Sunday, but later decided to support it. The move was seen as coercion by the ruling MVA as the BJP said it would not allow the Shiv Sena, Congress and Nationalist Congress Party coalition government to forcibly close shops on the day of the shutdown.
Maharashtra minister Nawab Malik claimed earlier today that the bandh is “being observed peacefully”. However, he acknowledged that “some incidents of people throwing stones” have been reported.
Malik had said, “There are reports of people throwing stones at some places, which is not correct. No one should indulge in such activities.”
The state government had said that everything would remain closed except essential services. The Agricultural Produce Market Committee or the vegetable market also remained closed.
To avoid inconvenience to the people, the Mumbai Police made a detailed plan. Policemen were deployed at strategic points. Three companies of Central Reserve Police Force, 500 Home Guards and 700 companies of other forces helped Mumbai Police in maintaining law and order.
Local trains ran on their regular schedule.