KATHMANDU, June 13: Normal life in core tarai districts remained tense on the first day of the four-day strike called by Rastriya Janata Party Nepal (RJPN) on Tuesday.
Normal life was affected in various parts of Mahottari and Saptari districts including the district headquarters. Banda enforcers took to the streets since early morning due to which major shops and markets remained shut. RJPN cadres organized torch processions and even staged demonstrations by burning tires in various places. Locals were obliged to return home empty-handed after the shops were remained closed due to the protests.
Vehicular movement was obstructed and many passengers were stranded in some parts of the tarai. More than 100 vehicles are reportedly stuck in various road sections of Saptari among which most of them are night buses.
"We have been living under this hot sun since early morning and there are no shops. Therefore we are relying on noodles and biscuits," said Roma Limbu, a resident of Paanchthar who was stuck in Shambhunath.
Though some schools and colleges dared to conduct morning classes, unfortunately they were warned and threatened by the protesters not to do so. As a result students had to return home without completing their classes.
Similarly, many industries, companies, factories, educational institutions and other organizations remained closed due to the banda. RJPN has clearly announced that it will not take part in local elections until the constitution is amended and their various other demands are addressed. So, the party is trying its best to disrupt the elections by staging protests since Tuesday.
This banda has badly affected the life of Muslims who are celebrating their greatest festival Ramadan at the moment.
As informed by Superintendent of Police Raj Kumar Lamsal, chief of Mahottari District Police Office, security forces have been tightened in order to avoid any untoward incident. According to him, anyone who will attempt to harm public will be taken into custody.
In Sarlahi, district headquarters Malangawa remained completely shut. Local market, schools and industries were largely affected.
(Our correspondents Mahesh Kumar Das from Mahottari, Jitendra Kumar Jha from Saptari and Santosh Singh from Sarlahi contributed to this report)