The Left parties have given a six-hour bandh call in Odisha on Thursday against the steep fuel price hike. Leaders of CPI, CPI(M), Forward Block and CPI(ML- Liberation) announced that the bandh would begin at 6 am and continue till 12 pm. State Congress president Niranjan Patnaik said his party will extend its support to the bandh.
CPI state secretary Asish Kanungo said vehicles will stay off the roads, shops and other business establishments will also remain shut during the period. The Left leaders demanded immediate withdrawal of taxes imposed on fuel by the Centre and the state government to bring down prices to provide relief to the common people.
Meanwhile, the Odisha government has asked all district collectors to ensure essential services are not affected. Officials said it was apprehended that protestors may close down business establishments, market places, government offices, courts, petrol pumps, banks and financial institutions during the strike.
Special Secretary (Home Department), Santosh Bala in a letter to Collectors and District Magistrates spelled out measures to be taken during the Odisha bandh which include keeping all essential services functional. Vehicular traffic as well as train services are also likely to be hit, Bala warned in her letter.
The government has also asked all departments to take advance measures in their offices in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack to ensure that official works id not affected due to the bandh.