Opposition parties express support to Bharat Bandh

Vastavam web: Most of the opposition parties on Sunday announced their support to the Bharat Bandh called by the Congress and Left Front to protest against the rising fuel prices. While parties like the Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S), Samajwadi Party (SP), Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), DMK, Trinamool Congress, Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Maharshtra Navanirman Sena (MNS) backed the shutdown, the Left has also declared a nationwide hartal.

The Biju Janata Dal (BJD), a non-NDA party, said although it is against the fuel price hike, it will not support the Bandh. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) took a similar stand in Delhi. The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) ruling in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana respectively, are also not supporting the call. “We support the issues raised by them. But at the same time, we do not want to waste another working day, especially when our Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is trying to build a new Bengal,” TMC Secretary General Partha Chatterjee has said. Left Front Chairman Biman Bose called for a 12-hour strike from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Monday across West Bengal in support of the all India “protest hartal” and urged people in the state to make it a grand success.

Karnataka’s ruling JD-S announced it will support the day-long nationwide protest. The Congress and JD-S will also protest against the misuse of the CBI, Enforcement Directorate and Income Tax office against opposition leaders. Former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda will join other opposition leaders at a protest rally and meeting in New Delhi. Meanwhile, state governments across the country braced for the Bandh with senior officials reviewing the security measures and many states deciding to keep schools shut on Monday.

Acting Chief Minister and Revenue Minister Narendra Chandra Debbarma urged the people to reject the ‘bandh’ and warned that that the government would strongly deal with the situation. Odisha’s ruling BJD said it will not support the Bharat Bandh. The party, however, said it is against the hike in fuel prices. “We have been holding protests across the state for the last three days to make the people aware of the steep price rise of the petroleum products,” said BJD spokesperson Sasmit Patra.