Protests keep cops busy, traffic curbs inconvenience citizens, some schools shut

  • | Sunday | 17th September, 2023

CHHATRAPATI SAMBHAJINAGAR: More than a dozen protests and sit-ins kept the police on their toes all day in Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar on Saturday. Life, in general, was thrown out of gear due to extensive traffic restrictions — to facilitate easy movement of politicians in the city for the cabinet meeting — and agitations. Several schools, anticipating inconvenience for students and parents, remained closed. In the morning, workers of Shiv Sena (UBT) gathered at Kranti Chowk to pay their respects to Colonel Manpreet Singh, Major Ashish Dhonchak, gunmen Ravi Kumar of the Rashtriya Rifles and deputy SP Humayun Bhat. UBT MP Sanjay Raut questioned the visuals of flowers being showered on Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to the BJP headquarters on the very day these men were killed by terrorists.Other protests highlighted a range of local to national issues. They were held at different locations, including Kranti Chowk, Bhadkal Gate, Aurangpuras Mahatma Jyotiba Phule statue and City Chowk.The Naikada Adivasi Foundation held a protest demanding the fulfilment of long-pending demands of stone-crushing workers. Labour unions and organisations, including the Bahujan Kamgar Shakti Mahasangh, Maharashtra Rajya Mahanagarpalika-Nagarpalika-Nagar Parishad and Kamgar Ekta Sanghatna, all of them representing different sections of employees in the Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar civic body, staged protests for their long-pending demands.Bhartiya Kranti Dal, RPI and Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi wanted the state to take responsibility of the families of farmers who committed suicide, declare drought in Marathwada and take steps to ease farmers sufferings. Pandhre Vadal Mahila Morcha held a protest against the alleged intrusion in the reservation meant for tribals, while several outfits representing OBCs protested against the inclusion of the Maratha community in the OBC category. Dhangar community members demanded reservation in the scheduled tribe category, while Maratha community members sought immediate reservation in the OBC category.The special cabinet meeting sprung a surprise holiday on several students as a section of city schools chose to remain shut. School officials said the closure of key roads would have affected the movement of student transportation, especially school buses.We declared a holiday on Saturday as students and parents could have been inconvenienced. The academic loss will be compensated by holding the classes on September 24 (Sunday), officials of one of the leading CBSE schools said.Devidas Narware, an autorickshaw driver who transports schoolchildren, said he informed the parents early on Saturday morning about his inability to ferry students. I cater to students studying in leading state-board affiliated schools. It was difficult to reach the schools on time due to the closure of roads and traffic restrictions, he said.As protesters taking part in morchas took to the streets, few internal roads in our areas were closed, leading to a complete blockade for us, said Aarif Shaikh, a resident of the Jubilee Park area.

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