Bengaluru unfazed: Bandh had no effect on normal life

Bengaluru unfazed: Bandh had no effect on normal life

Representative image. (Credit: Photo)

Businesses remained open and transportation functioned normally as the nationwide bandh call by trade unions and the Left parties on Wednesday had no visible impact on the city.

However, banking services and work in industries/factories were hit in some areas as workers joined the protest.

The BMTC and KSRTC buses were plying normally in all the routes, while metro train services remained uninterrupted. Schools and colleges had a normal day, while shops and business establishments kept their doors open.

As permission to hold a rally from Town Hall was denied, the workers’ union shouted slogans against city police commissioner Bhaskar Rao. There was additional police presence in vital areas like Town Hall, KR Market and Majestic.

Addressing the workers at Freedom Park, CITU leader Meenakshi Sundaram said workers are literally on the streets as contract employees are losing their jobs and industries are closing down. The Central government should implement schemes for job security in the unorganised sector, he said.

Workers demanded implementation of the Swaminathan committee report, even as they remained angry at the city police commissioner for turning down their request for the rally.

Thousands from the workers’ union who converged on Freedom Park sat on the road and shouted slogans against the Central government.

When some leaders tried to speak on the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and National Registry of Citizenship (NRC), workers asked them to limit their speech to the government’s anti-labour policies.

Activist Vatal Nagaraj staged a protest near the Majestic bus station in support of the unions’ strike. When he tried stopping the buses, the police dispersed his supporters and took Nagaraj into custody. He was later released.

More than 200 policemen were piled at the Town Hall as part of the preventive measures, while thousands of officers were deployed across the city. No untoward incidents were reported in the city.

More police deployment was seen in the Peenya Industrial Area, where, on April 19, 2016, buses were torched and policemen attacked during the second day of the garment workers’ protest over changes to the Provident Fund rules.