Bhopal, Sep12: Normal life remained paralysed in Madhya Pradesh in the forenoon today as Vishwa Hindu Parishad workers disrupted road and rail traffic to protest demolition of the 'Ram Sethu' off Rameshwaram coast for smooth passage of ships. VHP workers put up pickets at vantage points to block the traffic causing inconvenience to commuters, particularly students and office-goers.
In the state capital, office-goers had a harrowing time as the main arteries were blocked in at least 15 places. Police personnel deployed to maintain law and order did not come forward to help the people in distress though the VHP leaders had announced that essential services would be left untouched.
City buses were off the roads during the agitation in Bhopal and Indore. Kolar township, having about three lakh population, remained cut off from the state capital for over four hours due to the agitation.
At Hoshangabad, national highway No 59 was blocked by VHP workers, who also stopped the 2853 down Durg-Bhopal Amarkantak Express at the outer of Hoshangabad station briefly.Barring stray incidents of violence, the traffic blockade agitation from 0800 to 1100 hours was ''by and large peaceful'', Additional Director General of Police Surendra Singh said.
At Indore, 41 VHP workers were arrested for attempting to detain trains. The Indore-Nagda passenger train was also detained for five minutes. A stone-throwing incident was reported in Chandannagar area when agitators were challenged by a rival group.