Aurangabad District Grinds to a Halt as Maratha-Samaj Calls for Bandh

The echoes decision made during a meeting of the Maratha Kranti Morcha reverberated through Aurangabad district on Monday, as a district-wide bandh was enforced. This coordinated shutdown was initiated in response to what the Maratha community perceives as a brutal police assault on their fellow protesters in Jalna last Friday. Additionally, the community voiced its long-standing demand for government reservations, an issue they claim has remained unaddressed for years.

Aurangabad marketplaces remained shut

The impact of the bandh was unmistakable as the streets of Aurangabad witnessed deserted marketplaces. Traders and shop owners stood united, closing their businesses in solidarity with the bandh's objectives. Sunar Galli, the famed jewelry hub, lay desolate, while Shahgunj wore a vacant look. The effect of the bandh was also palpable in areas like Mondha and along Jalna Road, where even hardware stores and prominent outlets remained shut. The heart of Aurangabad, City Chowk, bore witness to a complete shutdown, with most markets following suit. 

Public Transport Disrupted

Concerns about security led to many parents refraining from sending their children to school, while college students found their institutions open. However, crucial sectors such as commercial offices, banking, and healthcare functioned normally. The absence of auto-rickshaws and city bus services due to the bandh disrupted the daily commute for office-goers, teachers, and students alike. Adding to the transportation woes, the MSRTC bus services have remained non-operational for the past three days. The result was minimal traffic on the city's roads, with many market streets lying eerily empty.

Agitation continues on kranti-chawk

Amidst this backdrop, the Maratha community's agitation unfolded at the Kranti area, where members gathered to voice their demands for community reservation and protest against the police's alleged use of lathi charges during a recent demonstration in Jalna. The protesters expressed their frustration with the government, raising slogans like "Jai Shivaji" and others. Youth from the community organized rallies around Kranti Chowk, including a notable bike rally.

Heavy Police Bandobast Deployed

To maintain law and order, a substantial police presence was observed at crucial junctures and markets throughout the city. This robust police deployment aimed to ensure peaceful protests and minimize any potential incidents of violence. Consequently, police bandobast (deployment) was enforced on key intersections and market centers.

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