Bharat Bandh
Staff members walk past graffiti painted on a road in Pune.Reuters

Confusion reigns over the planned nationwide strike on Monday to protest against the demonetisation in the country. Opposition parties and the BJP have been involved in mud-slinging over scrapping Rs. 500,  Rs. 1, 000 notes in the country and curbing cash withdrawals, which have reportedly affected the daily wage earners and common people.  

The Congress party said that they have not called for a Bharat Bandh on Monday, November 28, but they would hold nationwide protests. Senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh said that the BJP was spreading rumours that the Congress has called for a Bharat Bandh. 

He also said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi believes in "dhamaka" politics and the note ban "was a political move being sold as a fight against corruption". 

Apart from the Congress, the Trinamool Congress party in Bengal also said that it would not observe Bharat Bandh on Monday. Mamata Banerjee's party will also be protesting against the government's move to make the higher denomination notes illegal overnight. 

However, Left parties in Kerala and West Bengal have supported the shutdown. 

In Karnataka, Chief Minister Siddarahamaiah said that there would be no bandh, only protests in the state. However, the State Assembly session was rescheduled from Monday to December 3. If there's a Bharat Bandh in the state, bus transportation will be affected. 

Central Bengaluru will be affected on Monday with traffic jams as the youth wing of the Congress is expected to hold a rally at the Town Hall. 

Meanwhile, Janata Dal (United) General Secretary Pavan Varma said on Sunday that the party has supported the government's demonetisation from day one and that it would not be a part of 'Akrosh Diwas', Opposition's planned protest against the note ban.

On Friday, Telangana Rashtra Samithi Deputy Leader in Lok Sabha B Vinod Kumar had said the party will not support the Bharat Bandh on November 28 as it has already asked the government to ease the hardships faced by the common man over the issue. 

In Kerala, there's a high chance of the government going through with the strike since the Left, which is in power in the state, is supporting it. A 12-hour strike from 6 am to 6 pm is expected on Monday. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has said that hospitals and emergency services will not be affected. However, academic institutions and trade activities will be closed. 

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