Bharat Bandh: Buses Attacked in Howrah, Train Services Affected as Banana Leaves Throne on Overhead Wire
Strike supporters in West Bengal (Photo credit: IANS)

Kolkata, January 9: Transportation services in West Bengal were disrupted on Wednesday as trade unions continued their Bharat Bandh shutdown for the second and final day. Protesters reportedly attacked a bus, leaving some children injured. Train services were affected on Sealdah-Lakshmikantapur Namkhana and Diamond Harbour section as strike supporters threw banana leaves on overhead wires.

Two students were injured after protestors participating in the two-day nationwide strike called by Central Trade Unions (CTU), demanding minimum wages and social security schemes among others, pelted stones at a bus at Shanpur Mor on Jhikira-Howrah route. Following multiple attacks on buses, the West Bengal government asked bus drivers to wear helmets. Trade Unions’ Bharat Bandh Call Derails Trains, Commuters Hit Hard.

CPM leader Sujan Chakraborty along with other protestors was detained by the police while they were participating in the Bharat Bandh protest. On Tuesday, sporadic incidents of vandalism were reported from parts of the state even as the police arrested several protesters. The strike is called by central trade unions protesting against the “anti-people” policies of the Centre.

Stones were pelted at a school bus in Champadali area of Barasat in North 24 Parganas district. The students were later deboarded from the bus, police said. In Howrah, Siliguri, Bardhaman, Birbhum, North and South 24 Paraganas, clashes broke out between Trinamool Congress (TMC) workers and strike supporters as TMC activists tried to stop them from forcibly imposing the strike.

Protesters burnt effigies of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and burnt tyres in various parts of the state including Kolkata. Protesters squatted on tracks in some places to stop trains and burnt tyres on the roads. The state government had announced that its employees would be barred from availing casual leave or half day leave on Tuesday and Wednesday.