‘Bharat Bandh’ in Kudla a Total Flop, Except for 10-minutes of Road Blockade by Protesters

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‘Bharat Bandh’ in Kudla a Total Flop, Except for 10-minutes of Road Blockade by Protesters

  • ‘Bharat Bandh’ in Kudla a Total Flop, Except for 10-minutes of Road Blockade by Protesters on the Highway near Nanthoor Circle.

Mangaluru: Following close on its heels after the ‘Karnataka Bandh’ on 5 December was a total flop in Kudla/Mangaluru, the ‘Bharat Bandh’ today, 8 December, a call given by nearly a dozen farmer Associations in protest against the three farm laws enacted by the Union Government recently failed to evoke much response too, in Mangaluru. All government offices, banks and shops were functioning normally with the Karnataka farmers Associations deciding to observe a 12-hour Bharat Bandh (India Shutdown), across the nation other than the Education hub. The farmer organisations have, however, exempted essential supplies and services, including hospitals from the dawn-to-dusk bandh.

Elaborate security arrangements were made by the Police to maintain law and order and prevent untoward incidents like damage to the public property and use of force in shutting shops or business establishments. While some pro-farmers had called for the Bandh, transport services, businesses/Shops, government offices etc were not affected in the city, and the City life looked normal like other days. Police have been put on alert to control any untoward incidents. KSRTC operations were not disrupted, while Fuel outlets, as well as restaurants, were all open.

Auto-rickshaw and cab drivers were seen doing business as usual. Ashok-, a cab driver speaking to Team Mangalorean said, “If I participate in the Bandh, who is going to reimburse my daily income. This one-day bandh will not serve any purpose other than creating income loss for common people like us. I am glad to see that the people didn’t respond to the bandh call”. Joachim, an auto driver said, “If they pay me to stop working today, I am ready for the bandh, if not I am sorry. I have a wife and three children to take care of, and sitting at home today, will not make my day worthwhile”.

Too bad-even the ‘Farmer Ladies’ didn’t show their solidarity towards the Bandh

Police have intensified security across the City and on highways to prevent forcible closure of shops and commercial establishments and untoward incidents. Elaborate security arrangements have been made, including the deployment of additional police personnel in and around the City to prevent untoward incidents and ensure law and order is maintained during the 12-hour shutdown. However, the organizations have exempted essential supplies and services from the dawn-to-dusk shutdown.

Surprisingly, Taj Mahal Cafe in Kodialbail was Closed for Bandh? Oops.. not really, Tuesday is a Weekly holiday!

Call given by opposition parties for Bharat Bandh was in protest against the Farmers Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020 and the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020. Only groups of leaders of Congress, DYFI, CPIM, and left parties staged demonstration and sit-in, and blocked the National Highway for nearly 10 minutes, a time allotted to them by the police, after which moving to the side of the Highway, the leaders delivered few speeches.

On a final thought, what would anyone benefit from a one-day Bandh, other than creating more loss to the business and public? While calling for “Bharat Bandh” or “State Bandh” or “Mangaluru Bandh”, it seems like our politicians and Union organizations leaders are affected by this disease. Staging a hunger strike or calling for a Bandh is nothing but a political publicity stunt and just a Nataka. Are all these organizations and leaders proud of their decision to close India and Mangaluru, thereby putting the citizens, hard-working people and businessmen/traders in hardship? Does it make any sense, when bandhs/strikes/hunger strikes in the past have shown no results at all, rather than a waste of time and huge money loss? And for the fact, even when the Supreme Court has issued orders not to call for any Bandh, then what good is to have a Supreme Court and their ruling, when people give a damn about it.

But even if the Bandh was a Success-what will anyone Accomplish? NOTHING. The perspective behind the ‘ Bandh’ will be totally lost, it will look like it is just used to showcase the political strength of parties/Unions. The government will lose crores in revenues; businesses will lose day’s profits; daily-wage workers/labourers and their families will suffer due to loss of one-day wages; farmers also will suffer huge losses; etc; We always tend to evaluate the success by the immediate material gain, and that is not our fault but our minds are shaped in that direction. After this ‘Bandh’, many Indians will be still disappointed and obviously make them say that this ‘ Bandh’ was sheer useless. So then why even call for Bandhs when it doesn’t even serve the purpose.

The first person to suffer due to this ‘ Bandh’ will be the daily wage worker, he/she will lose one day’s wages, and some workers will be kept hungry. Even travellers who want to reach their respective destinations will be stranded in bus-stands and other places, cursing the people behind this bandh. This will be democracy as its worst, where people will be stranded like anything without normalcy in the country. While the citizens are going to be taken for a ride, I don’t know what our government is doing by allowing parties to issue bandh calls which are disrupting everything. Don’t our law enforcement authorities follow the rules of the Supreme Court, not to allow bandhs?

What we need to see is to have government/systems become people-friendly like in other nations. I think ‘Bandhs’ are not the solution to solve issues, instead of transparency and reasoning/justification that we should be asking for. We should ask why the government is taking such decisions and help the government with alternate solutions in case the government is unable to look for an appropriate solution. But this one-day Bharat Bandh including Mangaluru did not solve any issues or problems.

The bottom line is ‘Bandhs’ will flame inflation for sure and will increase income disparity-making the poor poorer. All I have to say is that “Bandh” is useless, a waste of time and energy, huge losses and disruptions to normal life. I bet many of you will agree with me. What do you have to say? And I am glad that educated and people using common sense did not support the ‘Karnataka Bandh’ and today the ‘Bharat Bandh’- and they should not support any other Bandh in the future either.

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