NAGERCOIL: The bandh call given by Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh and Ockhi-hit farmers received a lukewarm response, with government offices and school functioning as usual on Friday. While sporadic incidents of stone-pelting were reported, bus services remained largely unaffected in the district. The bandh was called to pressurise the State government to speed-up the disbursal of compensation to farmers hit due to the havoc wreaked by cyclone Ockhi. Sources said that 34 miscreants were secured for allegedly pelting 38 buses with stones in the region.
While most shops put up shutters in Nagercoil, Marthandam, Thuckalay, Kulasekaram, Kalliyakkavilai, Sucindram and Kanniyakumari, for medical shops, it was business as usual. Similarly, rubber and cashew nut processing units at Kulasekaram were not hit by the bandh. However, two government buses were targeted by bike-borne assailants, who hurled stones at three vehicles. A bus carrying pilgrims too came under attack. A passenger was reportedly hurt in the incident. The bandh failed to bring the district to a grinding halt, with many shops on the outskirts doing a brisk business.
Bus services to Tirunelveli was unaffected. Government buses came under attack at Marthandam, Arumanai, Thiruvattar and other places. At Kulasekaram, bus services were affected following the stone pelting incident, while operations to the interior parts were also hit. Mini bus services towards Parakai and others places stayed off the roads.
As government offices, schools and colleges were open on Friday, a section of office-goers and students faced difficulties in reaching their destinations on time. A few bus services were terminated following stone-pelting incident. A top police officer told Express that 38 government buses came under attack. Stones were pelted on nine buses at Marthandam. Of the damaged buses, six belonged to Kerala.