The city eased up on the second day of the national bandh on Thursday with buses hitting the road and shops and business establishments staying open. The two-day nationwide strike was called by 11 organisations against the “anti-people” policies of the Union government. Among other demands, the protesters wanted a reduction in fuel prices.
A few public-sector banks such as the branches of State Bank of India remained closed. Many schools and colleges remained open on Thursday.
NH 66, which connects the city with Kerala, was deserted. No truck or bus approached the city from Kerala, where the bandh was total. Few students came in trains from Kasaragod to attend colleges in the city.
Earlier, activists of the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) demonstrated in front of the office of the Deputy Commissioner. A large number of head-load workers from Old Bunder took part in the protest. They marched from Old Bunder to the office of Deputy Commissioner and took part in the demonstration.
Addressing the demonstrators, CITU District Secretary Vasant Achari demanded that a minimum wage of Rs. 10,000 per month be fixed for labourers. Restrictions with regard to bonus should also be removed.
The State government should take steps so that labourers from the unorganised sector could get pension, he said. The CITU workers submitted a memorandum at the office of the Deputy Commissioner on Thursday.
Our Udupi Special Correspondent reports:
There was little or no response across Udupi district to the second day of the general strike called by trade unions.
Private city and service buses and Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) buses functioned as usual. According to the Education Officer in the Department of Public Instruction Ashok Kamath, nearly 70 per cent of the schools functioned in the district. The attendance was much better than on Wednesday, he said.