The Bharat Bandh called by several farmers’ organisations on Tuesday evoked a tepid response as normal life was witnessed in most of the states.
The poor response from the people to join the strike, except in Punjab, turned out to be a major setback for the agitating farmers’ organisations who are demonstrating at all the important intersections, highways, toll booths and roads that lead towards the national capital.
Significantly, their presence on the roads to enforce the bandh across the nation was hardly noticeable and it exposed the Opposition’s agenda to utilise the farmers’ protest call to further their own political interests by voicing against the Union government and the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
In most parts of the country, normal life remained unaffected as the usual functioning of business activities, office establishments, banking, stock exchange and the airports went on like everyday.
In many states, like those in North-East, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand, the strike had no impact.
The Railway services too remained normal throughout the day. At some places, where protesters had disrupted rail traffic, the blockades were lifted within 10-15 minutes due to the prompt action from the railway officials.
The Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC) markets remained fully functional in most of the states. The Azadpur Mandi in North Delhi, known as one of the biggest fruit and vegetable markets in Asia, and other marketing places remained open.
There was only partial impact of bandh in Rajasthan and Maharashtra and the police forces have taken prompt action against instances of forcible closure of shops by miscreants or activists of political parties.