Bargarh: Vehicular movements came to a grinding halt on NH-53 near Barahaguda toll plaza here today after activists staged a road blockade demanding establishment of a cancer hospital in the town.
Holding banners and shouting slogans, the activists from various social outfits, including United Forum for Cancer Hospital in Bargarh blocked the national highway for around five hours. Large numbers of vehicles were seen stranded on both sides of the road during the protest.
Earlier in the day, the activists took out a bike rally from the post office to the protest spot at Barahaguda toll plaza. Leaders cutting across party lines joined the protest.
The activists alleged that Bargarh has a very high number of cancer patients, in view of which the locals have been demanding for setting up a cancer hospital in the town. However, the State Government has signed a MoU with TATA Trust to set up a state-of-the-art cancer hospital on Bhubaneswar outskirts instead of Bargarh.
The agitators threatened that they would intensify their stir in coming days unless their demand is not met.