Over 200 people were arrested across Aurangabad and Pune in connection with the arson and vandalism during the bandh on August 9, which was called by the Maratha Kranti Morcha. The outfit’s coordinators, however, disclaimed responsibility for the violence and dubbed it the handiwork of anti-social elements.A total of 185 people, including five women, were arrested by the Bund Garden, Deccan, and the Kothrud police for indulging in stone-pelting and vandalism in Pune city. Some of them were later released on bail. The Aurangabad police arrested 31 people. Mobs went on a rampage in Waluj MIDC, damaging nearly 60 processing plants and offices of big firms, including Siemens Ltd, Worckhardt Ltd, Endurance Technologies, and Sterlite Technologies.Emergency meeting Appalled by the violence in Waluj MIDC, an emergency meeting convened by the Chamber of Marathwada Industries and Agriculture (CMIA) decided it would not give jobs to those found guilty of vandalism.“It was not the spontaneous outrage of any community. It was a carefully planned and premeditated attack in which around 250 people participated. The perpetrators smashed CCTV cameras, computers and office cabins. The industry as a collective and investors are agitated after the incident,” Ram Bhogale, president, CMIA, told The Hindu from Aurangabad. “What have the agitators gained by targeting the industry which is the primary source of employment in a region like Aurangabad?” he asked.CMIA sources said the canteen inside the Siemens compound was ransacked, while the cabin of the managing director of Endurance Technologies and several two-wheelers parked on the company premises were completely damaged. Tonnes of literature were reportedly stolen from Akar Tools while the plants of Man Diesel & Turbo India and Mylan Laboratories were attacked.“If some of the vandals, as we have reason to believe, are employees of firms, then they would be terminated while we [the CMIA] will be making sure the others do not get jobs in companies,” Mr. Bhogale said.Kishore Rathi, vice-president, Marathwada Association of Small Scale Industries and Agriculture, said such incidents of lawlessness could hinder promotion of Aurangabad as a major industrial hub. Action sought Meanwhile, in parallel press conferences in Aurangabad and Pune, Morcha leaders condemned the violence and demanded action against perpetrators. Shantaram Kunjir, a Morcha coordinator in Pune, said henceforth, all agitations will be conducted in the form of relay fasts wherein only select activists from the outfit will participate.Stating that the Morcha stands with the industry, Ravindra Kale-Patil, a coordinator in Aurangabad, said the violence was a deliberate attempt to defame the quota agitation. “The vandalism was clearly the act of anti-social elements. A code of conduct was laid down by us during the shutdown. We demand a Criminal Investigation Department probe and request the district administration to scrutinise the video footage and book the culprits,” Mr. Kale-Patil said.