Demand for Koshal state: TOI report on western Odisha bandh
BHUBANESWAR: The 12-hour bandh call given by various outfits, demanding a separate Koshal state, paralyzed normal life in western Odisha on Monday, even as lawyers in the region continued with their agitation pressing for high court benches.
While road transport came to a grinding halt in most parts, train services were partly affected. Majority of the educational institutions, government offices and commercial establishments remained closed for the day in 10 districts. No untoward incident was reported from any part of the state, police said.
“It was a complete and spontaneous bandh as most social outfits, citizen bodies, caste societies and students in the region extended their support to the bandh,” Kosal State Coordination Committee leader Pramod Mishra told TOI.
Activists were seen picketing in Sambalpur, Jharsuguda, Sundargarh, Bargarh, Kalahandi, Nuapada, Deogarh, Sonepur, Boudh and Balangir districts. Markets, banks and other government offices remained closed while several heavy vehicles were stranded on highways passing through the region.
The Sambalpur-Puri Intercity was stalled at Sambalpur Road station for about two hours as activists blocked the railway tracks. Trains passing in the region got delayed by two to four hours, sources said. In Bargarh, activists blocked the road by burning tyres.
The bandh evoked mixed response in Rourkela. While Rourkela Steel Plant (RSP) functioned as usual, movement of private vehicles in the city was normal. However, educational institutions and markets largely remained closed.
In Bhawanipatna, buses remained off the road as the Kalahandi Bus Association supported the bandh. However, government schools and banks remained open. Market and business establishments downed shutters in most parts of Kalahandi.
Meanwhile, advocates continued their stir seeking HC benches in their respective areas. In a meeting convened by Sambalpur Bar Association (SBA), all political parties resolved to boycott the urban election if the State Election Commission starts the nomination process again during the indefinite agitation period. “The political parties have resolved not to field candidates during the agitation period even if the election commission re-notify dates for the civic poll,” SBA secretary S S Sahu said.
(With inputs from Sambalpur, Rourkela and Jharsuguda)
Entry filed under: Athmallik, Balangir, Bargarh, Boudh, Demand by Bar Association, Demand by political parties, Demand by politicians, Demand of Koshal state, Deogarh, Jharsuguda, Kalahandi, Nuapada, Region watch, Sambalpur, Subarnapur, Sundergarh.