CPM resorts to road blockade, goods traffic affected

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Rourkela, Feb 25 (UNI) The 12-hour CPI(M)-sponsored road blockade demanding better road and rail link today seriously affected the movements of goods in and around Rourkela.

However, there was no problem in the movement of passengers as the vehicles were kept out of the purview of the bandh, Sundergarh district CPM Secretary Banamali Dhopal said here.

Mr Dhopal claimed that as many as 56 party activists were arrested from Roxy, Barsuan and Lahunipada areas during the agitation.

The party supporters blocked road at Koida, Kalta, Roxy, Joda, Bimlagarha, Barsuan, Raikela, Lahunipada, Kaleiposh demanding the repair of NH 215 from Panikoili to Rajamunda and Koida-Kaleiposh road.

They also demanded the extension of Puri-Rourkela passenger train up to Kiribur, Bhubaneswar-Sambalpur inter city up to Rourkela, early completion of Talcher-Bimalagarha rail line, attachment of second class coach in Barsuan-Biramitra Passenger and steps to run the Ranchi-Bhubaneswar Garib rath at the earliest.

Last week, Sundergarh district Collector Krishan Kumar had held a meeting with CPI-M leaders and appealed to them not to go ahead with the agitation.

The Collector had told the CPM leaders that funds had already been allocated for the repair work and it would start from next month.

Meanwhile, Bonai MLA Laxam Munda along with other party leaders sat on a dharna for some time in front of the residence of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik in support of the demand. They withdrew the dharna following a meeting with the Chief Minister on their demand.

UNI XC-BD KK KD BST2218

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