New Delhi: Bharat Bandh on Monday partially disrupted economic activities with commodity markets and the transport sector taking a hit in many parts of the country, and the industry pegged losses at up to Rs13,000 crore.
While Mumbai, the financial capital of the country, and several industrialised states including Maharashtra, Gujarat, were affected, the impact was partial in many other states like Tamil Nadu and in the national capital Delhi.
The 12-hour strike was called by the Opposition parties to protest the fuel price hike and rising inflation.
“The bandh is estimated to have cost the nation close to Rs13,000 crore in terms of GDP loss,” industry chamber Ficci said in a statement. Another industry body Assocham put the losses at Rs10,000 crore, while CII pegged it at Rs3,000 crore.
Wholesale commodity markets remained shut in most of the cities, while several flights from key airports like Mumbai were cancelled. According to the All-India Motor Transport Congress, 6 lakh vehicles were off the road.
Though the screen-based stock market remained open, the trading volume at the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) was down 52% to Rs2,857 crore against a daily average of nearly Rs6,000 crore.
According to reports by industry chambers like Ficci and Assocham, thin attendance was witnessed in commercial establishments in several states, while the economic activity came to a complete halt in states like West Bengal, Gujarat and Kerala.
Ficci said most of the industrial activities remained shut in Bangalore and majority of MNCs and IT firms preferred to give a holiday to their employees. In Mumbai, transport services were “completely affected” and traders were mostly off the market.
The PHD Chamber catering mainly to the northern states, said the impact was felt in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and UP.
Banking services were completely paralysed in Left governed West Bengal and Kerala while some disruptions were noticed in Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Mumbai.
The industry leaders including Rahul Bajaj and Adi Godrej have opposed the bandh and termed the protest as “odd and absurd”.
The disrupted rail movement also contributed to the industry loss.