The roads leading to the Secretariat will from Wednesday begin to show the hustle and bustle of city with the Left Democratic Front (LDF) leaders calling off the Secretariat siege.
The siege saw the gathering of thousands of protestors in the city on Monday; all roads leading to the Secretariat remained blocked by protestors.
Kerala State Road Transport Corporation will resume its services along the roads to the Secretariat. On Monday, not even two-wheelers were allowed on the road covering the Palayam–Secretariat stretch.
For the city Corporation’s Health wing, it was like Attukal Pongala considering the sheer number of people who thronged the city for the siege.
Left with little options, it was purely manpower that was relied on as close to 300 health workers were deployed under five health circles of the Corporation.
The health workers began work as early as 5 a.m. though full-fledged work started only after the protestors began moving out a little past noon. Most of the garbage was taken to a space beside the Chala-Attakulangara bypass. Health Standing Committee Chairperson S. Pushpalatha said most of the temporary canteens set up were on vacant grounds. Most of the food waste gathered were buried or burnt there itself.
The hefty task will be to clean up the premises of the Government Model SMV High School, University College, Government Arts College, and Government Sanskrit College, which were the camping centres for the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Border Security Force (BSF), and Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) deployed by the State in view of the strike. District Collector has declared holiday for these educational institutions on Wednesday.
For students, the siege brought in unexpected holidays. Schools have remained closed from the holiday for Id on August 9 till Tuesday.
Speaking to The Hindu , DPI A. Shajahan said it was mandatory that schools completed 200 working days for the academic year.
“The district has seen a number of hartals in the last two months and we have lost many working days. Even though we cannot cut down Onam holidays, additional hours will be put in to compensate for the lost days”, he added.
The shop owners along the Palayam –Ayurveda college stretch are also happy that they can finally get back to the business. Barring a few, most of the shops and commercial establishments had downed shutters due to the siege.
“This is time for pre-Onam sales and we feared that the strike, if had continued for a week, would have definitely affected our business. Not many would have turned up in the evenings due to the traffic restrictions “, said a salesman at a cloth store near the Secretariat.
The ones truly relieved are the nearly 4,500 policemen and traffic police personnel, who were deployed to regulate the siege. State police were stationed on all roads leading to the Secretariat and also deployed for night patrolling in these areas.
The Central railway station and bus stands in Thampanoor and East fort saw heavy rush, as protestors prepared to return home.
Around 10,000 protestors had gathered in the capital city from various districts for the siege led by the LDF. The prohibition ban imposed from Sunday in view of the siege had also been lifted, an official said.