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Businesses And Shops Shut In Protest Against Violence On Tribal Women

The peaceful bandh garnered widespread support, with people from all walks of life demanding justice and an end to the harrowing incidents that have sparked national outrage.

Bandh after ECIs delimitation draft
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Chhattisgarh's Bastar division witnessed an unprecedented display of unity and solidarity as businesses and shops voluntarily closed their doors on Monday to support the bandh called by Sarva Adivasi Samaj (SAS). The SAS, an umbrella organization representing tribal groups in the state, orchestrated the bandh to voice their collective protest against the shocking violence perpetrated against women in Manipur.

The bandh, which encompassed Kanker, Kondagaon, Narayanpur, Bastar, Bijapur, Dantewada, and Sukma districts, remained entirely peaceful, with no untoward incidents reported, according to police sources. The move garnered widespread support from all sections of society, with people joining hands to condemn the barbaric attack on tribal women in Manipur, according to PTI.

Prakash Thakur, President of SAS's Bastar division, expressed the community's deep anguish over the deplorable incident, stating that the act of parading tribal women naked was an affront to their dignity and brought shame to the entire nation. The SAS's Bastar division unit led the call for the bandh, which received backing from various quarters, including the Bastar Chamber of Commerce and Industries in Jagdalpur.

Jagdalpur city experienced a complete shutdown of business establishments and shops until 2 pm, mirroring similar scenes in other districts' headquarters and cities within the division. The bandh, however, made exceptions for essential services like schools, hospitals, medical stores, and ambulances, ensuring that the welfare of the public remained a priority during the demonstration. Furthermore, the region's transportation services continued their regular operations without any disruptions.

The catalyst for this mass display of solidarity was the heart-wrenching ethnic violence that erupted in Manipur on May 3 during a 'Tribal Solidarity March' organized to protest the Meitei community's demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status. The events of May 4, where two tribal women were subjected to the horrifying act of being paraded naked in Kangpokpi district, were captured on video and quickly spread across the nation, sparking widespread outrage.

As more than 160 lives have been lost since the eruption of violence, the bandh in Bastar aimed to draw attention to the urgent need for ending such heinous acts and calling for justice for the victims. The unity demonstrated by the people of Bastar serves as a powerful reminder of the collective strength in standing against violence and upholding the dignity and rights of all individuals, irrespective of their background or community.

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