INTRODUCTION: At least 12 people are dead after violence erupted during a strike against lawlessness in India.
GV Near-deserted street.
SV PAN Government building.
GV Bank closed.
GV PAN Closed shops. (2 SHOTS)
SV PULL BACK TO GV Closed bank.
SV PULL BACK TO GV Empty tracks and yard at Howrah station.
GV ZOOM TO SV Goods lying on platform.
LV & GV Howrah bridge and children playing on bridge traffic lanes. (2 SHOTS)
SV Street scenes, police at junction, trams crossing, few people.
SV PAN People assembling for demonstration.
SV Police on duty waiting for marchers.
SV Marchers, some with banners. (2 SHOTS)
GV Marchers, some with banners walking around corner.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: INTRODUCTION: At least 12 people are dead after violence erupted during a strike against lawlessness in India. Calcutta came to a standstill on Friday (3 April) as rival demonstrators clashed, and there were several bombings.
SYNOPSIS: The 12-hour strike was organised by Prime Minister Indira Gandhi's Congress Party and other opposition groups in the Marxist-run state of West Bengal .Government departments, banks and shops remained closed, and the streets were left almost deserted. The strike was called in protest at police shootings during a Calcutta demonstration on Monday (30 March), when three people were killed. Both that demonstration, and Friday's strike, were called to protest at what the Congress Party described as increasing lawlessness in West Bengal.
Rail services were hit; there were no local trains, and long-distance freight services also were cancelled.
Calcutta's Howrah Bridge is usually jammed traffic, but on Friday it served only as children's playground.
Bombs were thrown at gv-run buses and trams, which were operating with police protection.
West Bengal's ruling Marxist Party supporter took to the streets to protest at the strike, which virtually paralysed the city. Calcutta is India's largest city, with a population of nine million.
The protest began peacefully enough, as demonstrators shouted anti-Indira Gandhi slogans. But there were clashes later as demonstrators sporting Mrs Gandhi's strike also took to the streets. The 12 victims of the violence died as a result of bomb attacks and police firing. Police also used tear gas to break up fights.