Image: A view of Esplanade in Kolkata.
Kolkata: The six-hour general strike in Bengal called by the Left Front over Trinamool violence in the Panchayat poll nomination phase has failed to evoke a response. The strike was called for the duration between 6 am to 12 noon.
Be it in Kolkata or the districts, people went out to shop for vegetables in the morning and then for office/business like any regular day. Markets and shops were open as usual.
Public and private buses, taxis, app cabs, trains, and Metro ran as per the normal schedule. Classes at educational institutes ~ both private and public ~ started on time and the turnout of students was as usual.
Apprehensive of brickbat attacks, drivers of public buses in Kolkata drove the vehicles wearing a helmet. Policemen in large numbers were deployed at important locations in Kolkata to ward off any trouble arising out of the strike.
Left Front workers took out rallies in support of the strike at Jadavpur and Lake Town in Kolkata, Howrah’s Dasnagar, Barasat’s Chapadali More, Durgapur, and Siliguri but this hardly yielded a result vis-à-vis enforcing the bandh.
At Durgapur, Left cadres got into a scuffle with police after the men in uniform forcibly withdrew a road blockade by them.
Soon after the strike was announced on 11 April by Left Front, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had thundered that the state government will do everything to foil the bandh. State government yesterday issued an order stating that any employee skipping office today will lose pay and a day from his/her service record.