TNI Bureau: High alert has been sounded across India in the wake of the ‘Bharat Bandh’ call given by the BJP-led NDA and Left Parties. Normal life is expected to come to a complete halt during the 12-hour shutdown.
The strike call was given in protest against the Rs 7.50 per litre hike in petrol prices. The Opposition seeks to cash in the popular anger against the Congress-led UPA II Government at the Centre.
States like Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Uttarakhand, West Bengal, Kerala, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha may witness a complete shutdown today.
The bandh will be total in Odisha, where the ruling BJD has also given the ‘Odisha Bandh’ call. The Samajwadi Party has supported the bandh call in Uttar Pradesh, even as it is supporting the UPA Government.
Most vehicles will remain off the roads during the ‘Bharat Bandh’. Shops, business establishments, offices and many other organizations will have thin attendance today because of the strike. It would be interesting to see whether the Centre would respond to ‘Bharat Bandh’ by going for a partial rollback or just ignore the protests.