Mixed response to opposition's call for protests against demonetisation

Few states responded successfully to the Left constituents’ call for a 12-hour bandh against the Centre’s demonetisation drive

Trinamool Congress supporters during Mamata Banerjee’s rally in Kolkata. Pic/PTI
Trinamool Congress supporters during Mamata Banerjee’s rally in Kolkata. Pic/PTI

New Delhi/Thiruvananthapuram: Normal life was hit in some parts of the country yesterday as non-BJP parties took to the streets and Kerala and Tripura observed a bandh to protest against the Centre’s demonetisation move.

While the Left constituents called a 12-hour bandh, other parties including Congress and TMC only held protests. JD(U) and BJD did not participate in the protests.

The national capital witnessed protests by Opposition parties against demonetisation which caused traffic snarls in several areas. All Left parties, including CPI(M) and CPI, took out a procession against demonetisation from Mandi House to Jantar Mantar. Due to the protest, traffic jams were witnessed on roads leading to Jantar Mantar.

Hundreds of workers from various Opposition parties, led by DMK, were arrested when they staged protests across Tamil Nadu. The parties slammed the ban on Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes as a “war on rural poor” that was causing “hardship” to the common man.

Gwalior district Congress President Darshan Singh died of cardiac arrest in Gwalior soon after submitting a memorandum during the ‘Jan Aakrosh Diwas’ protest. Gwalior Divisional Commissioner S N Roopla said Singh was part of a Congress delegation which came for submitting the memorandum to him. In Kerala, the ruling CPI(M)-led LDF sponsored 12-hour strike against demonetisation evoked a near total response. Shops and business establishments downed shutters and state-run KSRTC and private buses kept off the roads across the state.

In West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee threatened to demonstrate outside Prime Minister Narendra Modi's residence against demonetisation, vowing to dislodge him from the seat of power if the scrapping of high value currency notes is not withdrawn. She held a protest march from College Square to Esplanade.

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