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News Entry# 287073
Nov 29 2016 (07:10)  Hartal throws life in city out of gear (
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News Entry# 287073     
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Posted by: rdb*^  133024 news posts
KSRTC suspends services; offices register low attendance; trouble-free transactions at banks
The State-wide hartal called by Left parties in protest against the Centre’s demonetisation drive threw life out of gear in the city and its immediate suburbs on Monday.
Public transport, including private buses and autorickshaws, stayed off the road, putting people arriving and departing from the city mostly by trains to immense hardship.
did not operate services either except its four services to Pampa. The number of pilgrims was also relatively low. Private vehicles were out in numbers to make up for the absence of public transport.
Hotels and restaurants and even majority of roadside eateries remained closed, piling hardship on the travelling public.
Business also came to a grinding halt as almost all shops and establishments remain shuttered. The usually bustling Ernakulam market and Broadway were no exception either.
At the district collectorate, only 29 out of the 182 employees, turned up for duty. The District Collector and the Additional District Magistrate were present. It was no different at the civil station as only a handful of 70-odd offices functioned.
Despite arranging a convoy from Palarivattom, Infopark logged just 50 per cent attendance, while some companies allowed their staff to work from home. The Cochin Port Trust recorded an attendance of 74 per cent, though its operations were not affected.
The operations at the Vallarpadam International Container Transshipment Terminal were also not affected, though container movement through road was hit.
Ironically, the hartal offered those who managed to reach banks relatively trouble-free transactions, including deposit of old currencies and withdrawal using withdrawal receipts as very few ATMs had money to dispense. ATM replenishment was also hit.
The city police operated circular services on three routes starting from South Railway Station and Vyttila Mobility Hub throughout the day starting from 5.30 a.m. The services touched upon important points in the city such as North Railway Station, KSRTC bus station, Palarivattom, Vyttila, Thripunithura, Kakkanad, and Infopark.
Voluntary groups like Say No to Hartal also came to the rescue of stranded passengers at railway stations as they dropped several patients bound for various hospitals and passengers at Thripunithura, Fort Kochi, Mattancherry, Edakochi, Kakkanad and Infopark.
The newly launched all-women Pink Police Patrol teams also helped in the transportation of women passengers. “We dropped women passengers at Infopark and the Cochin Special Economic Zone in our patrol vehicles,” said Sub Inspector N.S. Saleena who was in charge of the patrol team at Thrikkakara.
Volunteers of Blood Donors Kerala, a voluntary group, ensured that the requirement of blood did not go unmet as they drove their own vehicles to hospitals to donate blood. Sabarimala pilgrims were supplied buttermilk at Kalady by a group of young volunteers.
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