Mumbai, Jan 3: Several parts of Mumbai came to a halt on Wednesday as train, taxi and auto services were badly-affected in the wake of the day-long Maharashtra bandh called by Dalit outfits.
The bandh has been called by Dalit outfits as a mark of protest against the violence that marred the 200th-anniversary celebrations of the Bhima-Koregaon battle near Pune on Monday. During Monday's violence, one person was killed and several others were left injured in Bhima-Koregaon village.
"Trains were halted at Virar and Goregaon stations in Mumbai this morning for around 30 minutes, but later resumed," informed Western Railways PRO. Protesters have been staging a "rasta rokho andolan" since Tuesday.
In Mumbai, local trains are the city's lifeline. If trains services are delayed or stopped, the entire city comes to a halt.
"There are fewer auto-rickshaws and buses on roads today. This is troublesome for the entire state, particularly people who have to go to offices," a commuter waiting for transport at Thane's Vartak Nagar told ANI.
In Pune, buses heading towards Satara and Baramati have been stopped, according to ANI. They will resume only after further orders.
However, MSRTC PRO clarifies that all its buses are plying in Maharashtra on Wednesday. "All our buses are plying across the state so far. In case of any vandalism, we will take a call. So far there have been no incidents." Yesterday, at least 11 state buses, including MSRTC and PMPML, were damaged.
On Tuesday, the School Bus Owners' Association (SBOA) said it would not operate its fleet of 40,000 buses on Wednesday. Anil Garg, president of SBOA, said, "For security reasons, we have decided not to ply our buses on the first shift tomorrow. If the situation remains peaceful, we will run the buses on the second shift."
Many office, school and college-goers in Mumbai have decided to remain in their homes to avoid facing any trouble outside.