Buses torched, traffic thrown out of gear on final day of Delhi bandh
Police, civic officials fear large-scale violence Sheila Dikshit Government survives no-trust motion
NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court-appointed Monitoring Committee on Wednesday decided to postpone the sealing drive in the capital by another day (till November 2) after the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) and the police expressed apprehensions of large-scale violence if the crackdown on illegal commercial establishments operating out of residential areas was resumed.
The decision, after a marathon meeting with senior MCD and police officials, has come as a breather for the traders since the Centre will also be approaching the court on Thursday for providing them relief.
In the evening, the Group of Ministers headed by Home Minister Shivraj Patil discussed the developments.
Briefing reporters, Union Urban Development Minister S. Jaipal Reddy said the Centre would apprise the court of the situation.
During the day, the Sheila Dikshit Government survived a no-confidence motion moved by the Bharatiya Janata Party on the sealing issue.
Chaos marked the third and final day of the Delhi bandh with agitating traders and their employees targeting city buses and blocking major roads. At least five city buses were torched and over a dozen other buses and numerous government vehicles damaged. Traffic jams were witnessed at different places.
Protesters stopped trains at Seelampur in northeast Delhi, where during the last bandh four persons died in police firing. Police and para-military personnel had a tough time reining in unruly protesters and restoring traffic.
Students face hardship
Though several private schools remained shut, students who had gone to school had a harrowing time returning home due to the traffic disruptions. At some places, parents rushed to schools to fetch their children.
Doctors close clinics
Owners of nursing homes and private medical practitioners, also facing the threat of sealing, closed their clinics. As a result, patients had to approach either government hospitals or big private hospitals. Traders have decided to reopen their shops from Thursday. They will hold a meeting to discuss their next course of action.