Kolkata: Road and rail blockades continued in different parts of West Bengal on Saturday by people protesting against the amended Citizenship Act, officials said. Incidents of violence were reported from Murshidabad and North 24 Paraganas districts, and rural Howrah, police said.
The National Highway 34, one of the arterial roads that connect north and south Bengal, was blocked in Murshidabad. Several other roads in the district were also blocked, they said.
In Howarh district’s Domjur area, the National Highway 6 was blocked as protester set tyres ablaze and ransacked several vehicles, the police said. Huge police contingent has been rushed to the spot to control the situation, they said.
Train movements were also blocked in the Sealdah- Hasnabad section of the Eastern Railway. The agitators are staging sit-ins on the tracks at Shondaliya and Kakra Mirzapur stations of the section since 6.25 am, a railway spokesperson said.
The blockade at Kakra Mirzapur was withdrawn around 9.30 am, however, the one at Shondaliya is still ongoing, he said. Train services have also come to a halt in the Howrah-Kharagpur section of the South Eastern Railway since 11 am, as protestors sat on the tracks at Sankrail, Nalpur, Mourigram and Bakranawabaz stations, said zonal spokesperson Sanjoy Ghosh.
Protests over the amended Citizenship Act reached the shores of West Bengal on Friday, with agitators resorting to violence and arson at railway stations and thoroughfares across the state, seeking immediate revocation of the law.
The legislation has put the entire Northeast on the boil, where people fear that it may exacerbate the problem of illegal immigration, while Muslims across the country apprehend that the move could be a precursor to the country- wide implementation of the National Register for Citizens (NRC).