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Normal life was partially hit in Assam on Friday during a 12-hour state-wide bandh called by Bajrang Dal. Around 70 Bajrang Dal supporters were arrested from all over the state for allegedly trying to damage property during the bandh, police officers said.
Guwahati Senior Superintendent of Police Anand Prakash Tiwari told PTI that 18 Bajrang Dal supporters were arrested from the city for trying to forcefully implement the bandh, which has been called to protest the alleged links between the All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) and jihadis in Bangladesh.
He said bandh supporters tried to obstruct traffic at many places by burning tyres but police cleared them immediately and picked up the activists.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) state unit has also extended its support to the bandh.
At Rangia in Kamrup district, 40 Bajrang Dal activists were arrested when they tried to stop railway workers from joining duty in the morning.
A senior police official said the Bajrang Dal supporters also attempted to block the Indo-Bhutan road at Sitara by allegedly burning tyres but they were arrested and the route was cleared.
The police resorted to mild lathicharge on protesters when they tried to block traffic and forcefully close some shops at Tezpur in Sonitpur district, a police officer said. “Over 10 activists have been picked up,” he said.
Although many business establishments were closed, government offices remained open in the capital city. Fewer vehicles were on the roads.
Patrolling has been enhanced and additional security personnel posted in vulnerable areas.
Meanwhile, AIUDF chief Badruddin Ajmal has denied the media report on the alleged link and termed it as “false, baseless and politically motivated.”