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Sharmili Mallick

Kalahandi/Dhenkanal: Normal life was thrown out of gear and vehicular traffic came to a grinding halt in Kalahandi, Dhenkanal and Bolangir on Tuesday following shut down in the districts over different issues.

The Janmamati Surakshya Sangram Samiti today called for a 24-hour bandh in Bhawanipatna of Kalahandi district demanding distribution of land pattas for slum dwellers of the town.

The protesters alleged that as the slum dwellers of the town do not have Record of Rights for their land, they have been deprived of various government schemes and programmes.

Shops, government offices, various business establishments and markets remained closed due to the shut down. The members of the Samiti also blocked road at Naktiguda Chhak in the town to press their demands. However, schools, colleges, other educational institutions and emergency services were exempted from the bandh.

Similarly, normal life was paralysed in Dhenkanal town after the district unit of BJP observed a 12-hour bandh over 4-point charter of demands from 6 am today.

The demands include establishment of a city hospital in the old campus of Dhenkanal District Headquarters Hospital (DHH) at Baji Chowk, appointment of adequate number of doctors and medical staff in the new building of DHH at Dakhinikali Road, setting up of a police outpost near the DHH and implementation of Centre’s Ayushman Bharat scheme.

The BJP workers were seen picketing at key locations of the town since the morning hours to mark the bandh.

“The DHH at Baji Chowk was established around 80 years ago. However, after the shifting of the DHH to the new building, the old campus has become defunct. Therefore, we want the establishment of city hospital in the old building. Besides, the new DHH does not have sufficient staff. So, we want the appointment of adequate doctors and nurses and a police outpost outside the hospital,” said a BJP worker.

While vehicles stayed off the roads, various educational organisations including schools and colleges, markets and shops remained closed due to the bandh in the town.

Similarly in Bolangir, the Nagarika Committee called for a 24-hour bandh in Tusura NAC and Gudvela block demanding upgradation of Tusura Hospital. The members of the committee also picketed at various places.

The bandh disrupted vehicular movement in the block.

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