Patna: Violent protests were witnessed in Patna and other districts of Bihar during a day-long bandh called by Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) against the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the National Register of Citizenship (NRC).
Angry protesters demanded scrapping of the CAA and vandalised private and commercial vehicles in Patna and other districts of the state. In some districts, including Patna, protesters also disrupted rail routes.
In Darbhanga and Vaishali, RJD supporters took off their shirts and used buffaloes to block the highway.
The protesters also blocked the Mahatma Gandhi road bridge over Ganga which connects Patna with northern Bihar.
Large-scale vandalism was witnessed in the state as protesters smashed windshields of taxis and three-wheelers and damaged cycle-rickshaws that plied on the roads in defiance of the call for the shutdown at the towns of Bhagalpur, Muzaffarpur and outskirts of Patna.
Also, a journalist of a leading news channel here was on Saturday roughed up by persons trying to enforce the day-long bandh.
The bandh called by RJD on Saturday was supported by around five opposition parties including the Congress and Left.
RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav who led the protest march from his party’s headquarter to Dak Bungalow intersection in Patna during the bandh slammed the NDA especially JDU president and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar for supporting the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) in the Parliament.
“I salute the Jamia students for raising their voice aggressively against the Citizenship Amendment Act which is unconstitutional and against humanity. This Act has exposed the divisive character of the BJP”. RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav said while addressing his supporters during the bandh on Saturday.
While opposing the proposed NRC, he had earlier said that the people’s documents often gets washed away during floods in states like Bihar and hence it won’t be easy for them to prove their identity if the government demands it.
Taking a dig at Bihar CM Nitish Kumar for refusing to implement the NRC in Bihar, RLSP chief Upendra Kushwaha said, “State governments won’t be able to stop the NRC exercise if the Centre decides to implement it. If Nitish Kumar is saying this then he is only misleading people of the state for his own political gains.