Students block roads in Patna as protests over ‘irregularities’ in railway exams continue

Tyres were burnt and roads blocked during the protests in different areas of Bihar. [Photo: Twitter/Das Vanthala]

Patna: Several roads were blocked and tyres burnt by the protesters in Patna in support of a bandh called by student-backed groups and political parties over alleged discrepancies in railway recruitment examinations.

On Friday, reports said a number of students’ organisations, including the Left-affiliated All India Students Association (AISA), joined the bandh call to protest against the alleged irregularities in the Railway Recruitment Board’s Non-Technical Popular Categories (RRB-NTPC) exam 2021.

The call was given on Thursday, a day after angry agitators in Bihar set fire to train carriages. Police later resorted to tear gas shelling to disperse the angry crowd.

Amid reports of vandalism during the ongoing protests that began earlier this week, at least four persons have been arrested for vandalism, while several others, including teachers of prominent coaching institutes, have been booked for inciting and indulging in violence, Hindustan Times reported.

Meanwhile, the grand alliance of Opposition parties in the state have expressed their support to the student-led bandh call, while several constituents of the ruling Nitish Kumar-headed NDA government have urged the authorities to withdraw all complaints against the protesters.

The agitators, mostly railway job aspirants, allegedly torched four empty coaches of a stationary train in Gaya and blocked rail traffic between Gaya and Jehanabad on Wednesday.

Many of them were also involved in stopped trains like Rajendra Nagar-New Delhi Tejas Rajdhani express, the Sampoorna Kranti express, South Bihar Expres, and Mumbai-bound Lokmanya Tilak Terminus Express.

Protests were also held in Patna, Bhagalpur and Sasaram, Gaya, Bhojpur, Buxar, Muzaffarput and Samstipur distrcits, for nearly five hours on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The Railways ministry has formed a committee that will examine grievances of protesting aspirants. However, the students’ bodies who announced Bandh termed the railway ministry’s move to form a committee to look into the concerns of the students as a “hoax”.


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