GUWAHATI, Oct 23 - The 12-hour bandh called by the AJYCP, KMSS and 58 other organizations demanding withdrawal of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill evoked near total response across the State amidst sporadic reports of violent picketing. The impact was, however, mixed in Barak Valley.
Claiming that the bandh was a total success, the organizations said it was referendum against the bill. Hundreds of picketers were detained across the State.
Public transport was off the road and shops and business establishments remained closed despite several measures taken by the State government to thwart the shutdown.
Reports of burning of tyres poured in from many places, but no major untoward incident was reported during the day.
Stone pelting on vehicles were reported during the early hours in some places in Upper Assam. Picketers were seen swarming the roads in large numbers in Golaghat.
In Guwahati, the State Secretariat registered nearly 80 per cent attendance, but in other government offices in the city the turnout was negligible.
There was no public transport on the roads in the city as well, apart from a few ASTC buses but even those did not get passengers. Cabs too were off the roads.
At various stations in Lumding and Tinsukia divisions, picketers tried to disrupt train services. At Sarupathar station, miscreants kept burning tyres in the railway track at noon, and a local train had to move over it.
Railway officials said no trains were cancelled or rescheduled. However, a few trains ran fifteen to thirty minutes late.
Bandh supporters also took out motorbike processions and protest marches in some parts of the State.
Several picketers were detained in Panbazar and Beltola areas of the city. Among those detained in the city was AJYCP vice president Sanjib Bora. The commercial hub of the city, Fancy Bazar, also observed a total shutdown.
In a joint statement later, the 58 organizations claimed that the response to the bandh call was �unprecedented�.
�All sections of people and communities supported the bandh and we are grateful to them. The government applied its full force to foil the bandh, even by threatening people and traders. The BJP too had asserted that the people won�t support the bandh. But despite all odds, people were firm and their support to the bandh showed they won�t accept the Bill,� the statement said, adding that the success of the bandh was a referendum against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill.