Cameras will provide extra teeth to security personnel against bandh enforcers during Monday’s dawn-to-dusk shutdown called by the Left and supported by opposition parties to protest the Madhubani firing.
The administration claimed that elaborate security arrangements have been made to prevent any untoward incident during the CPI-ML (Liberation)-sponsored bandh called to protest the firing in Madhubani that claimed two lives. The RJD and the LJP are supporting the protest. However, essential services (see chart) would remain out of the bandh’s purview.
Patna district magistrate (DM) Sanjay Kumar Singh and senior superintendent of police Amrit Raj reviewed the security arrangements for Monday at a meeting with senior police and administrative officers at the district collectorate on Sunday. Deputy inspector-general (central range) Sunil Kumar expressed satisfaction over the preparations.
Sunil Kumar said the administration had identified sensitive localities and would accordingly deploy armed forces at vulnerable points. Specially trained personnel at every police station would record activities of bandh supporters on still and video cameras, he added. The photographs and video footage would help the cops nail the protesters.
District armed police and special auxiliary police personnel would be deployed in adequate numbers as a precautionary measure. He, however, refused to give the exact number of policemen to be deputed for maintaining law and order in the capital.
The DM warned of taking stern action against those indulging in vandalism. “No one would be allowed to take the law in his hands,” he said.
On a note of assurance, CPI-ML (Liberation) state committee member Santosh Sahar said party activists had been asked not to disturb essential services. He said normal life would not be affected. “It is a protest against the government and not against the masses,” he clarified.
At a public meeting in Gaya, RJD chief Lalu Prasad said the bandh had been called against the Nitish Kumar-led government that has “virtually failed to protect the dignity of women”.
The DM said: “Instructions have been issued to all station house officers to take all possible steps to ensure a peaceful bandh. On-duty policemen have been instructed to exercise restraint and ignore provocation by protesters.”
Students’ organisations, particularly those associated with the Left and opposition parties, would also be under the surveillance of men-in-uniform. “We cannot rule out the involvement of students in Monday’s bandh, as one of the victims of police firing was a student of a Madhubani-based college,” the DIG said.
DM Singh said strict vigil would be maintained on the activities of protesters during the bandh. “Those trying to disturb peace would face stiff action,” he said, adding that the administration had already deployed magistrates and police personnel to cope with the situation. Chairman of Bihar Public Schools and Children Welfare Association D.K. Singh said: “Public schools across the state will remain closed for the children’s safety.”
Government schools and colleges
City buses (8am
Autorickshaw service (Dawn to dusk)
Private schools and colleges
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