| A deserted street in Kokrajhar during the bandh. Telegraph picture |
Kokrajhar, March 4: A motorcycle and a goods carrier were allegedly torched as the 100-hour proposed “Bodoland” bandh announced by the Peoples’ Joint Action Committee for Boroland Movement from the midnight of February 28 paralysed life for the fourth consecutive day today.
Sources said a motorcycle was torched near Jwhwlao Swmbla Basumatary Park in Basugaon around 11am when two youths from Bijni heading towards Basugaon were stopped by four men. The bike, which did not have a registration number, was then set on fire.
In another incident, suspected strike supporters tried to torch a goods carrier at Kagrabari in Basugaon around 11.30am.
However, the driver was able to douse the fire and escape with the vehicle from the spot.
At least four vehicles were torched in various areas since the beginning of the strike.
A bike was torched in the early morning on the first day of the bandh near Bajwi hotel in the heart of Kokrajhar town. On Saturday evening, a motorcycle was torched at Adabari, around 5km from Kokrajhar town.
The strike has been called in the proposed “Bodoland” area, comprising BTAD and adjoining tribal-dominated areas, in protest against the state government’s “lackadaisical” attitude towards their demand for statehood under Articles 2 and 3 of the Constitution. The committee also wants the Centre to hold a dialogue with the National Democratic Front of Boroland (Progressive) at the highest political level.
Besides paralysing life, the strike has also greatly affected the student community appearing in ongoing examinations, including matric, higher secondary and degree examination as many students, especially from rural and remote areas, have to travel miles by bus or other private vehicles to appear for the exams.
The committee has, however, exempted the ongoing examinations, weddings, religious events, healthcare services, water and milk supply and electricity from the purview of the strike.
The strike has paralysed life in the region as business establishments remained closed throughout the day and offices registered thin attendance during the strike period. Public vehicles remained off the roads, including National Highway 31(C), which connects the Northeast with the rest of the country.