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Gujarat Congress today held "rail and bus roko" agitation across the state to protest the Centre's demonetisation move and the cash crunch.
The call for the agitation was given by Gujarat Congress two days ago, alleging that the Narendra Modi government had failed to address the issue of shortage of cash.
Responding to the call, large number of Congress workers and leaders, including those from the party's student wing NSUI, today blocked roads in cities like Ahmedabad, Rajkot, Jamnagar, Surat, Vadodara, Chhota Udepur, Limdi, Morbi, Himmatnagar, Mehsana, Valsad, Bardoli, Dahod and many other parts of the state.
At several places, such as Rajkot, Himmatnagar, Nadiad, Surat and Bharuch, protesters also stopped trains by squatting on the tracks or climbing onto the locomotives, prompting the police to detain them.
According to police, hundreds of protesters were detained across the state by police for trying to stop buses as well as trains.
In Ahmedabad, 136 Congressmen, including 44 women workers, were detained for stopping the state transport buses at the city's main bus depot in Geeta Mandir area.
"We had deployed large number of force to stop the agitators from blocking the buses at Geeta Mandir. During evening, we have detained 136 Congress workers for trying to stop the buses. We have released them afterwords," Assistant Commissioner of Police (K division), Chintan Teraiya, said.
Talking to reporters, city Congress chief Chetan Raval slammed the Centre over the "unavailability of cash".
"The situation is worsening by the day, as people are unable to withdraw their own money from banks and ATMs. Despite standing in queue for hours, people are going home empty handed. This protest is to highlight the issue of mismanagement by the government," Raval, who led the protest, said.
In Valsad, at least 10 NSUI members, led by their president Mahesh Patel, were detained for setting ablaze Modi's effigy.
In Surat, several Congress workers were detained for showing black flags to BJP chief Amit Shah, who arrived there to attend a mass-wedding function this evening.
"Black flags were shown when Shah's convoy passed from Maharana Pratap Chowk area of Ghodadara area of the diamond city," said police.
In Vadodara, at least 100 Congress workers were detained
from different parts for trying to block the roads.
While two Congress workers were detained for setting fire to tyres on Ahmedabad-Vadodara highway on the city outskirts, around 100 have been detained for blocking an internal city road at Dandiya Bazar area.
Those who have been detained include Vadodara Congress president Prashant Patel and General Secretary of Gujarat Congress Narendra Ravat.
"We are not against demonetisation. We are against the hardships being faced by poor people due to mismanagement in implementing this scheme," Ravat said, when he was detained and taken away by police.
In Chhota Udepur district, senior Congress leader and former Union minister Naran Rathva, along with 150 other Congressmen, were detained for staging similar protests.
In Rajkot, railway police detained around 20 workers for trying to stop trains at Bhaktinagar Railway station. More than 50 workers, including senior Congress leader Kunvarji Bavalia, have been detained in other parts of the city during the day, said Rajkot police.