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Road transport services remained affected and most of the shops were shut across Maharashtra on Monday in the wake of the statewide bandh called by the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government to protest the killing of four farmers in Uttar Pradesh's Lakhimpur Kheri district.

Leaders of three ruling parties - Shiv Sena, Congress and NCP - staged protests against the Lakhmipur Kheri incident, and Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut claimed the bandh was “100%" successful.

Meanwhile, the opposition BJP in Maharashtra claimed it was a state government-sponsored bandh and was unwarranted.

Earlier on 6 October, the Maharashtra state cabinet passed a resolution to express its condolences over the unfortunate death of farmers in the Lakhimpur Kheri incident in Uttar Pradesh.

Cabinet ministers also observed two minutes of silence and paid tributes to the deceased farmers.

Here are the latest updates of Maharashtra bandh:

Autorickshaw drivers caned: Activists of the Shiv Sena caned autorickshaw drivers who were ferrying passengers defying the bandh in Thane. 

Forced shop closure: At many places, protesters forced shopkeepers to down their shutters in the presence of police personnel. In Kalyan city of the Thane district, local Shiv Sena leaders forced the closure of shops and other activities.

In neighbouring Navi Mumbai, activists of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) threatened shopkeepers and forced them to down shutters near the APMC market area in Vashi.

Many shopkeepers complained of the loss of business due to the "forced shutdown".

Hotel ransacked: In Chandrapur, Shiv Sena workers ransacked a Shivbhojan hotel located near the bus stand. Notably, this hotel provides food at a cheap rate to underprivileged people under the Shiv Bhojal Thali (food plate) scheme of the Shiv Sena-led MVA government.

Good response to bandh: The shutdown evoked a good response in Boisar and Vasai in the Palghar district neighbouring Thane. Police said no untoward incident was reported. 

Pune shopkeepers support bandh: Pune shopkeepers extended support to the bandh as all shops except the essential services remained closed in the district.

"The traders of the market had decided to observe the bandh and informed the farmers in advance," market administrator Madhukant Garad said.

Notably, the Federation of Retail Traders Welfare Association (FRTWA) in Maharashtra yesterday objected to the bandh.

Crowds on railway stations: In Mumbai, buses of the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST- the transport undertaking of the city civic body) and many of the traditional 'black-yellow cabs' remained off roads, which led to huge crowds on suburban railway stations to commute by local trains.

The BEST bus services were closed after incidents of stone-pelting at some places.

Buses damaged: BEST said its buses were damaged in areas like Dharavi, Mankhurd, Shivaji Nagar, Charkop, Oshiwara, Deonar and near Inorbit Mall.

"The BEST administration has called for police protection and buses will be operated from all depots after reviewing the situation," a statement read. 

‘Stone pelting not right’: Maharashtra minister and NCP leader Nawab Malik on Monday said that there are reports of stone pelting in the state and urged people to not involve themselves in such acts.

"There are reports about stone pelting at some places, which is not right. No one should indulge in such activities," said the NCP leader.

Security deployed: According to Mumbai Police, security was deployed at strategic points, with 3 companies of SRPF, 500 Home Guards, and 700 men from Local Arms units.

BJP opposes bandh: Hitting out at the MVA, the BJP claimed on Monday the three-party dispensation’s concern for farmers was “pure hypocrisy" and it “imposed" the shutdown using official machinery.

Leader of Opposition in the Maharashtra Assembly Devendra Fadnavis said if the MVA government is so concerned about farmers, then it should first provide relief to those affected due to unseasonal rains in the state's Vidarbha and Marathwada regions.

 

 

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