More than a dozen people were injured during clashes in Bihar’s Arrah city on Tuesday, during the shutdown certain groups have called to protest against caste-based reservations. The police have arrested 127 people in connection with the protests, ANI reported.
A group of anti-quota demonstrators clashed with pro-reservation groups comprising members of the Other Backward Classes and Dalits, an unidentified police officer told The Indian Express. Gunshots were heard during the incident.
Anti-reservation protestors also stopped a train in Arrah, while Bharat Bandh supporters blocked roads and enforced a shutdown in the city.
Hundreds of demonstrators also halted trains, blocked roads and forcibly closed markets in Patna, Begusarai, Lakhisarai, Muzaffarpur, Bhojpur, Sheikhpura and Darbhanga districts of Bihar, The Indian Express said.
In Rajasthan, markets in Jhalawar district remained closed, and protestors held a motorcycle rally, ANI reported.
Internet services will remain suspended in Jaipur city till midnight on Tuesday because of the shutdown. Police personnel have been deployed at the Sawai Man Singh stadium, as an Indian Premier League match is scheduled to take place there on Wednesday.
Jaipur Police Commissioner Sanjay Aggarwal had said on Monday that no procession or protest will be allowed on Tuesday and Section 144, which prohibits the assembly of more than four persons, would be imposed in the city.
Schools and colleges in Gwalior, Bhind and Morena districts of Madhya Pradesh remained shut on Tuesday. Curfew has been imposed in Bhind and Morena. The Madhya Pradesh government has deployed an additional 6,000 police personnel in the Gwalior-Chambal region till April 15, of whom about 4,000 are in Gwalior.
“We are monitoring the situation,” state Home Minister Bhupendra Singh told PTI. “There has been no impact of the alleged bandh so far. The state police is also keeping a watch on the social media.”
Six people died in the state during a Bharat Bandh on April 2.
Meanwhile, in Uttar Pradesh’s Hapur and Saharanpur districts, internet services have been suspended. “No big outfit has come out in support of the bandh. But we are keeping a close watch,” state Director General of Police OP Singh. In Firozabad district, schools for Class 1 to 9 remained closed.
In Punjab, protestors tried to shut shops in Ludhiana, The Indian Express reported. The police in Haryana are also on alert since last week’s shutdown led to clashes in Kaithal district.
The Ministry of Home Affairs had on Monday issued an advisory to all states, asking them to be on high alert in the wake of the proposed Bharat Bandh.
Organisations had called for Bharat Bandh after the Supreme Court issued an order on March 20 banning automatic arrests under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, citing its alleged misuse for blackmail.
Gujarat MLA Jignesh Mevani said that the Centre must bring an ordinance to before April 14 to nullify the Supreme Court judgement on the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. He said that if the Centre failed to do so, the Dalit community would launch a fresh agitation, and not allow any Bharatiya Janata Party worker to touch a statue of Babasaheb Ambedkar, The Indian Express said.