Opposition parties unite to make Jan Akrosh Diwas a big hit; Affects badly in some states

New Delhi, Nov 28: It was a rare unity of the opposition parties to voice their protest against the Centre-ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and PM Narendra Modi. The parties including Congress, Samajwadi Party, Left and Trinamool Congress came together to observe ‘Jan Aakrosh Diwas’ nationwide.

The protest on Monday was staged to demonstrate their protest against the demonetisation of higher denomination notes.

Though the opposition stood as a united front during the winter session of the parliament sessions, each party took their own modes to stage the protest.

As scores of party members of Congress took out protest march across the nation,  Samajwadi Party set PM’s effigy on fire as part of the demonstration. As the Communist Party of India (CPI) declared a 12-hour total shut down in Bengal, Trinamool Congress foiled it with strict circulars.

However, the irony was in Kerala were the ruling front Left Democratic Front (LDF) declared a 12-hour harthal and totally paralysed the normal life in the state.

Scores of CPI-ML (Liberation) workers, including its general secretary Dipankar Bhattacharya, were arrested and subsequently released for trespassing a prohibited zone while taking part in a rally in Patna.

The Congress and the RJD took out separate rallies, as part of the ‘Akrosh Diwas’. Both parties claimed that they were not against demonetisation, but with its implementation. The JD(U) had distanced itself from the bandh.

The response of ‘Jan Aakrosh Diwas’ was mixed in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh for the ‘Bharat Bandh’ call. Telangana Rashtra Samiti and Telugu Desam Party, the ruling parties of both the states did not support the decision of the opposition.

Though the Congress party too stayed away from the bandh call citing inconvenience to traders, it staged protests and burned PM Modi’s effigies at various places in both the states.

Though the party-men of YSR Congress, the major opposition in Andhra Pradesh, and left parties collectively tried to disrupt the transport services and shut down the shops, the call was weak in the state.

In Hyderabad, banks, business establishments, educational institutions, transport services and private and government organisations functioned as usual.

“The demonetisation of high denomination currency notes, which caused the crippling of economy has heaped untold miseries on the poor people of the country. It is nothing but financial emergency,” state Congress president Prasad Harichandan said.

Sudhir Parichha, a farmer union leader, who protested against demonetisation outside Balangir district headquarters, said, the move has finished farm economy and farmers are forced to sell their goods way below minimum support price.

But protestors didn’t disrupt vehicular traffic or shut down business outlets, police said.

However, the BJD led state government, which backs Modi’s demonetisation move, ordered schools and colleges to remain closed citing law and order issues.

Samajwadi Party workers torched an effigy of Prime Minister Narendra Modi near Prayag Station in Allahabad, while Congress activists held a public meeting at Clock Tower in Chowk in protest against demonetisation.

Leader of Opposition MK Stalin was detained by Chennai police along with another member of the DMK after they started protesting against the centre’s implementation of demonetisation.

“A financial tsunami is sweeping the country following demonetisation. Government promised to solve the issue in two days. Now it has been extended to 50 days and all these seem to be mere announcements,” Stalin said while addressing party workers.

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