New Delhi: The Bharat bandh call by the NDA and the Left parties started affecting normal life on Thursday with the other parties joining the the protests. Rail traffic was hit as Samajwadi Party and JD(U) workers blocked rail routes in Allahabad and Patna. The Saket Express and Ganga Gomti Express were stopped in Allahabad.
The bandh turned violent in Karnataka as protestors burnt three state-run buses and damaged 11 buses.
In Delhi, auto rickshaw unions have also joined the bandh with 55,000 autos and 15,000 taxis expected to stay off the road. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has warned of blocking traffic at about 100 areas across the city.
BJP leader Sanjay Joshi said he will protest near the Akshardham temple in Delhi.
In Mumbai, the Shiv Sena will try and enforce the bandh in some of its strongholds. The city's dabbawalas, too, will be join in and won't be delivering tiffins.
But public transport won't be affected as autos, taxis, BEST buses and railway unions have decided not to join the bandh in Mumbai.
Protestors in Kolkata blocked the East-West by-pass. Blockades were also put near the Howrah station, but were lifted by the police.
Meanwhile, anti-corruption activist Anna Hazare has also called on his supporters to support the agitation. Major protest rallies are expected in NDA strongholds like Bihar, Karnataka and Madhya Pradhesh.
The NDA and the Left called for a nationwide bandh after the government raised petrol prices by Rs 7.50 per litre.
The last Bharat bandh that was called by the Opposition on July 5, 2010 had cost the economy Rs 13,000 crore.