NEW DELHI, Sept. 20 (Xinhua) -- A nationwide strike called by the opposition parties partially paralyzed life of many states in India Thursday, including the capital New Delhi where most markets remained closed.
The strike, or bandh as it was locally called, is aimed at pressurizing the Congress-led government to roll back its decision to open multi-brand retail market to foreign investment and hike the price of diesels while capping supply of government subsidized gas cylinders to households.
Protestors also disrupted road and railway traffic in parts of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal and Odisha, said police.
Delhi's famous Khan Market, Connaught Place, Greater Kailash, Karol Bagh, Chandni Chowk and Kashmere Gate commercial areas looked desolate as shops were all closed. Government run institutions were running as normal and public transport, including the subway train, was not affected.
At New Delhi railway station, auto drivers staged a protest and refused to carry passengers, said Press Trust of India.
A spokesperson of opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) said the party was staging protests at around 100 locations in the capital, while police have deployed large number of officers and personnel at major roads to ensure security and order.
Samajwadi Party, the ruling party of Uttar Pradesh, and BJP workers stopped trains at a number of places in the largest state of the country, including the tourist attraction Agra.
However, the bandh had little response in the financial capital Mumbai which was celebrating the annual Ganesh elephant child god festivities.
Strikes also reportedly paralyzed life in the eastern state of Chhattisgarh, the northeast state of Tripura and the western state of Rajasthan.
In the eastern metropolis Kolkata, life was disrupted due to the 12--hour bandh called by Left parties.
Normal life almost crippled in east India due to general strike
KOLKATA, India, Sept. 20 (Xinhua) -- Life in entire east India has almost come to a standstill due to a general strike called by opposition parties in the country led by the major four Left parties.
The parties, led by the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and the other main opposition party, the Bharatiya Janata Party, called the strike protesting against the hike in petroleum prices, cap on subsidized liquid petroleum gas cylinders and foreign direct investment in multi-brand retail by the central government. Full story