New Delhi, December 8: A nationwide strike called by farmer unions against the Centre's agri laws received a mixed response in Delhi on Tuesday with most businesses and transport services operating, even as more protesters converged at the national capital's borders to join the farmers' stir while authorities maintained tight security.

Chants of "Jai Kisan", "Humara bhaichara zindabad, Kisan ekta zindabad", "Tanashahi nahi chalegi" rent the air as farmer leaders gave rousing speeches at the protest sites, vowing to continue their agitation.

The Aam Aadmi Party, which has supported the Bharat Bandh along with many other opposition parties, alleged that the Delhi Police has put Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal under house arrest after he met protesting farmers at the Singhu border on Monday, a claim denied by the city police.

Amid high drama, scores of AAP workers converged outside Kejriwal's residence while police stopped them and asked them to follow COVID norms. The BJP slammed Kejriwal, accusing him of indulging in "cheap and petty politics of deceit". Bharat Bandh: Amit Shah Calls For Meeting With Farmer Leaders at 7 PM Today, Aims to End Impasse.

Police said that there were no major fresh protests in the city except in some Delhi border points, but traffic diversions were made on some routes as a precautionary measure.

Protesting farmers had threatened to block key roads and occupy toll plazas 11 AM and 3 PM on Tuesday as part of their call for a 'Bharat Bandh' to press for repeal of the new farm laws. Most of the markets, including Chandni Chowk and Sadar Bazar, in the city remained open amid group patrolling by police personnel to maintain law and order. However, there were not many customers.

Praveen Khandelwal, general secretary of the Confederation of All India Traders, claimed transport services and markets functioned normally in the national capital and other parts of the country, and that the 'Bharat Bandh' had no impact on such activities.

"Trading activities were normal in Delhi markets that were open despite the Bharat Bandh. It was business as usual in all the wholesale and retail markets. Transport of goods is also taking place normally," Khandelwal and CAIT Delhi president Vipin Ahuja said in a statement.

The CAIT and All India Transport Welfare Association(AITWA) have not been part of the 'Bharat Bandh' strike, Khandelwal said. Also, public transport services in the national capital remained largely unaffected during a ‘Bharat Bandh' even though some auto and taxi unions kept their vehicles off the roads in support of the shutdown.

Kamaljeet Gill, the President of Sarvodaya Driver Association of Delhi which represents drivers working with app-based cab aggregators, claimed most of its members were on strike. Bharat Bandh: 200 More Trucks Laden With Farmers to Arrive at Singhu Border To Join Protests, Delhi Police Step Up Security.

"There are around four lakh app-based cabs in Delhi-NCR. Most of our members are on strike," he said. Many users of app-based cab services though said they did not face much difficulty in booking rides. "The waiting time for Ola and Uber was like any other day. I did not have to wait long or face any issues today," said Pradip Dubey, a commuter.

Autorickshaws were also easily available on the roads, said some other commuters. Sanjay Samrat, the President of Delhi Taxi Tourist Transporters Association, said drivers associated with several unions including those affiliated to Delhi State Taxi Cooperative Society and Kaumi Ekta Welfare Association were on strike.

"Our strike in support of Bharat Bandh has been successful," claimed Samrat.

The members of striking auto and taxi unions held an 'Akhand Paath' at Bangla Sahib gurudwara praying for the wellbeing of farmers and drivers, he said.

However, other auto and taxi unions claimed the strike did not have any impact on transport facilities in Delhi.

"All our autos and taxis are running normally and the strike has no impact at all. We support the farmers and their demands, but strike causes problems only to ordinary people," said Rajender Soni, the general secretary of the Delhi Auto Rickshaw Sangh and Delhi Pradesh Taxi Union.

Shops near the Tikri border, where hundreds of farmers have been staying for the last 13 days, remained open amid heavy police deployment. Addressing the protesters, a BKU leader said, "This is the last leg of our 'andolan', and it is important that we remain disciplined to make our protest successful."

All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) general secretary Hannan Mollah called the 'Bharat Bandh' a show of strength by the farmers and said their legitimate demands have found support from people across the country.

More farmers from Punjab and Haryana trickled in at the Singhu border with tractor-trolleys packed with supplies, while those already protesting stayed put at the site. "We start each day with renewed enthusiasm and vigour. More farmers are arriving every day. This fight is ours to win," said Rajinder Singh Kohli, a farmer from Mohali.

Adil Khan, chairman of APMC Azadpur Mandi, said the market is almost closed. "Many wholesale trader associations have joined the 'Bharat Bandh'. Some trucks loaded with vegetables and fruits arrived, but no work is being done there," Khan said.

S P Gupta, APMC chairman of Ghazipur Mandi, said the market was open but many traders have closed their shops to support the strike. Trading is negligible because there are no customers, he added.

Shopkeepers at Delhi's Sarojini Nagar market tied black ribbons around their arms to express solidarity with the farmers' demand. Taking to Twitter, Delhi Traffic Police said, "Singhu, Auchandi, Piau Maniyari & Mangesh borders are closed. NH-44 is closed. Please take alternate routes via Lampur, Safiabad, Saboli & Singhu school toll tax borders."

In another tweet, it said, "Traffic movement at Ghazipur border in the carriageway from Delhi to Ghaziabad is open and Ghaziabad to Delhi is closed."

The AAP targeted the Delhi Police with Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia saying that he was not allowed to enter inside Kejriwal's residence. The AAP leader later addressed a press conference outside the CM's residence.

"On the direction of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), the Delhi Police has put Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal under house arrest ever since he visited farmers at Singhu border. No one has been permitted to leave or enter his residence and he has not been allowed to meet anyone," AAP spokesperson Saurabh Bhardwaj said.

Refuting the charge, Satish Golcha, Special Commissioner of Police (Law and Order) North Zone said the situation in the national capital is peaceful. "It is claimed in certain sections on social media that there have been restrictions on the movement of the Chief Minister of Delhi. I would like to clarify in this regard that these claims are totally baseless.

"There are absolutely no restrictions. The chief minister is doing his normal engagements and there is normal movement. Further, he is going out of his residence for his engagements," he told reporters. Farmers' Protest: 32-Year-Old Farmer From Sonipat Found Dead at Tikri Border Allegedly Due to Cold Weather.

Anto Alphonse, Deputy Commissioner of Police (North) also tweeted a photograph of the entrance of Kejriwal's residence and denied the allegations.

BJP spokesperson Gaurav Bhatia accused CM Kejriwal of indulging in "politics of lies".

"Stop this politics of lies and step out of your house. There are cameras outside your house. Let the entire country and Delhi see whether you're under house arrest or not," he said.

(This is an unedited and auto-generated story from Syndicated News feed, LatestLY Staff may not have modified or edited the content body)