Jharkhand partially shuts down over lawmaker’s killing (Lead)

July 10th, 2008 - 8:55 pm ICT by IANS  

Ranchi, July 10 (IANS) The dawn-to-dusk state wide shutdown by the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) to protest Janata Dal-United (JD-U) lawmaker Ramesh Singh Munda’s killing by suspected Maoist guerrillas evoked mix response in the state Thursday. Normal life in Ranchi, Jamshedpur, Dhanbad, Hazaribagh and Ramgarh districts was crippled. Businesses and educational institutions remained closed and most of the vehicles stayed off the roads. Attendance in government offices was marginal. The coal transportation was also affected in some parts of the state.

However, in Palamau, Chatra, Latehar, Pakur and Godda districts traffic plied normally, and shops and schools remained open.

Hundreds of NDA supporters enforcing the shutdown were detained from many parts of the state. They were released later, official sources said.

Suspected Maoist rebels shot dead Munda Wednesday in S.S. High school of Bundu on the outskirts of Ranchi. Two security guards and a schoolboy were also killed when gunmen opened fire during a prize distribution function in the school.

“We gave the call to protest the killing of Munda. Earlier, during the Madhu Koda government Lok Sabha MP Sunil Mahto was killed. No one is safe in the state,” BJP state president P.N. Singh told reporters here.

The slain JD-U lawmaker was cremated on the banks of Kasi river in Bundu. The funeral was attended by thousands, including former chief minister and BJP leader Arjun Munda. No minister was present when JD-U lawmaker was cremated.

The body was earlier kept in the state assembly where Chief Minister Madhu Koda paid homage to the slain lawmaker.

The Jharkhand government has recommended a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation in the JD-U legislator’s killing.

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