Live updates on the Karnataka bandh over Mahadayi dispute
Jan 27, 2018, 16:48
The saffron party suspects the bandh is a Congress ploy to disrupt the BJP rally.
Pro-Kannada outfits called for a bandh demanding PM Narendra Modi's intervention in the inter-state Mahadayi river water row with neighbouring Goa. The IT major's offices in Mysuru and Mangaluru were also shut.
The Mahadayi river's water was needed for drinking and irrigation in the four drought-prone districts of Karnataka, activists said.
The dispute began in 1980s, when Karnataka designed a number of dams, canals and barrages to route the Mahadayi river water to the Malaprabha basin, which is water-deficient. The river in Goa, where it is known as Mandovi, flows for 52 kilometres.
SC has presently stayed the construction undertaken by Karnataka. In Belagavi, the bandh has limited impact.
The bandh affected regular life.
Though autorickshaws and cabs were seen plying, they were out in lesser numbers.
As a precautionary step, schools and colleges in most parts declared a holiday.
A group of protesters tried to disrupt rail services by entering the Bengaluru's Sangolli Rayanna railway station but police stopped and detained them. The Bengaluru Metro is also expected to function normally. Protests were confined to demonstrations and burning of effigies while state transport corporations suspended bus services in many places.
Incidentally, the ruling Congress too has been shying away from negotiations as the party has been backing Goa since May 2007.
What was the opposition BJP's reaction?
With Amit Shah, BJP National President attending the last Parivartana rally in Mysuru, the BJP in the state has charged CM Siddaramaiah of hatching this plan to stop Shah from addressing people in the CM's own backyard.
The BJP, however, has termed both the bandhs (on Jan.25 and Feb.4) as "politically motivated".
The educational institutions have made a decision to remain shut in view of the security of the students.
This has led to a pitched political battle in the state, with the Congress accusing the BJP of not doing enough to ensure water for those living in these drought prone regions.
The pro-Kannada organisations and organisations of farming communities had earlier also called for bandh over the dispute.
The Karnataka bandh has been called to put pressure on the state and central governments to resolve the Mahadayi water sharing dispute.
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