Bandh called by BJP in Raj evokes mixed reaction

Last Updated: Sat, May 18, 2013 15:15 hrs

Jaipur: The state-level bandh call given by BJP, to protest the CBI charge sheet against senior party leader Gulab Chand Kataria in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter case, today evoked mixed reaction in parts of Rajasthan.

Markets in many areas in different district remained shut but there was no major impact on public transport and offices as well as other services.

The bandh was peaceful barring a few incidents of minor scuffle between the party workers and shopkeepers.

Whereas the party claimed the band successful, ruling Congress party termed the bandh a "flop show".

BJP state president Vasundhara Raje addressed the party workers at Badi Chaupad in Jaipur and accused Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot of "misusing" CBI and police against his political rivals both in BJP and within Congress.

"Chief Minister is targeting his rivals in both the parties by misusing CBI. Gulabchand Kataria was falsely implicated in (Sohrabuddin) case," she said.

Meanwhile, marble businessmen also participated in the bandh and the units were closed in Kishangarh and other areas as one prominent marble businessman has also been named in the chargesheet.

BJP activists in groups took rounds in the market to make sure that the bandh gets successful.

In Bikaner and Jodhpur division also, many markets remained shut but transportation was not affected.

The party had given the call for a state-level bandh today to protest against the charge sheet against Kataria, who along with three others have been booked in the fake encounter case.

Sohrabbudin and his wife were allegedly abducted by the Gujarat Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) from Hyderabad and killed in a fake encounter near Gandhinagar in November 2005.

"Kataria was implicated falsely in the case and this was done at the behest of Congress," BJP's state general secretary Kalicharan Saraf said.

Mass protests were held at several places in Udaipur, Kota and other cities. A highway was blocked in Udaipur for several hours which caused traffic jam, sources said.

Emergency services, however, were left out of the strike and remained unaffected.

Reacting to the bandh, the ruling Congress said that it was not successful and a flop show.

"BJP is trying to politicise the investigation of the CBI so as to gain political mileage and it is the reason behind the bandh call," PCC General Secretary Pukhraj Parashar said.

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