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2-min read

Cauvery Row: Protests in Karnataka Intensify, Mobs Ransack Govt Offices

Protesters held bandh in Mandya and blocked roads at several places. They mobbed and ransacked several government offices in Mandya forcing their shut down, while attendance at government offices remained thin.

Imran Khan | CNN-News18

Updated:September 6, 2016, 3:25 PM IST
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Mandya: The Cauvery water sharing dispute between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu has intensified with agitated farmers and activists belonging to pro-Kannada outfits blocking Bengaluru-Mysuru Highway against the Supreme Court directive to the state to release Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu.

Protesters held bandh in Mandya and blocked roads at several places. They mobbed and ransacked several government offices in Mandya forcing their shut down, while attendance at government offices remained thin.

Over 2,000 police personnel have been deployed in the Cauvery belt to contain the protest and to maintain law and order. Prohibitory orders have been clamped around Krishnarajasagar Dam and entry of visitors to it prohibited till September 9.

The Cauvery row hotted up after the Supreme Court directed Karnataka to release 15,000 cusecs of water to Tamil Nadu for the next 10 days to address the plight of the farmers there.

The SC direction triggered an immediate backlash with the farmers' body spearheading the stir, calling for a bandh in Mandya district.

Shops, hotels and other commercial establishments and theatres and hotels remained shut and schools and colleges declared a holiday in the district where state run and private buses are also not plying.

Protests are also being held in Mysuru and Hassandistricts, fed by the Cauvery, demanding that Karnataka should not release water.

How the Cauvery river has ebbed and flown over the years (Network18 Creative) How the Cauvery river has ebbed and flown over the years (Network18 Creative)

Venting their anger, protesters burnt effigy of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa at several places.

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, who is holding a meeting of senior Ministers, legal experts and officials, has also invited legislature floor leaders and MPs later in the day to discuss the further course of action. "We don't have water even to drink, forget about using it for irrigation. We will discuss in detail today," Siddaramaiah said.

Meanwhile, the government has appealed to people not to resort to agitation and to maintain calm.

"My appeal to the public is that don't resort to agitation...and keep calm and we will make all efforts to protect the interest of the farmers," Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister TB Jayachandra said.

Jayachandra said people should maintain calm as it is an order by the Supreme Court and the government needs to go before the Cauvery supervisory committee and convince it.

"My appeal is be calm, and don't spoil any government property or anything because it is a Supreme Court order. We have to go before the Supervisory Committee and we want to try to convince (it) also," the Minister said.

Former Chief Minister and State BJP President BS Yeddyurappa asked the government to file a petition countering the Supreme Court order.

In Mandya, Kannada Rakshna Vedike outfit activists held a bike rally and burnt the effigy of Jayalalithaa. G Madegowda, President of Cauvery Hita Rakshana Samithi, the body spearheading the agitation, criticised the chief minister and irrigation minister for their "irresponsible" behaviour over the Cauvery issue.

He also called the district MLAs to resign enmasse to protest against the "injustice."

| Edited by: Rashi Mathur
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