CPI(Maoist) calls bandh in six states to protest Indian repression in Kashmir

[Wikipedia:  “Bandh (Hindi:  बंद), originally a Hindi word meaning ‘closed’, is a form of protest used by political activists in some countries like India and Nepal. During a Bandh, a political party or a community declares a general strike.  Often Bandh means that the community or political party declaring a Bandh expect the general public to stay in their homes and strike work. The main affected are shopkeepers who are expected to keep their shops closed and the public transport operators of buses and cabs are supposed to stay off the road and not carry any passengers. There have been instances of large metro cities coming to a standstill. Bandhs are powerful means for civil disobedience. Because of the huge impact that a Bandh has on the local community, it is much feared as a tool of protest.“]

Maoists support Kashmiris, call strike

Times of India,  September 27, 2010

NEW DELHI: In an attempt to show solidarity with protesting Kashmiris who have been demanding “azadi” and attacking security forces, Maoists have called for a 24-hour bandh in six states on September 30.

In a statement dated September 23, the CPI (Maoist) said September 30 will be observed as a bandh in six states — Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh and Orissa — and also in Gadchiroli, Gondia and Chandrapur districts of Maharashtra and Balaghat in Madhya Pradesh in protest “against the killing of Kashmiri youth by security forces since June 11”.

The statement was issued by Abhay, spokesperson of the central committee, and Anand, central regional bureau spokesperson. The party said there would be a “closedown of all rail and road traffic, banks, government and private offices, industries, educational institutions and business establishments”. “We are excluding essential services like hospitals and other services from this bandh call,” the statement said.

The statement justified the stone-pelting in Kashmir and called it democratic. It has been a Maoist strategy to join forces with all manner of protests, particularly if they are directed against the state.

In their attempt to gain support from Kashmiris, the party demanded “immediate end to massacres by Indian armed forces in Kashmir, withdrawal of military and paramilitary forces, repeal of AFSPA, plebiscite for Kashmiris and release of all political prisoners”. Continue reading