Gundlupet bandh evokes mixed response

Farmers, BJP leaders condemn minister's 'lazy' remark

More than 100 farmers and ten BJP workers were arrested during the Gundlupet bandh, called by various progressive organisations and Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha on Wednesday.

The bandh, though evoked a mixed response, was called in protest against Cooperation and District In-charge Minister H S Mahadev Prasad’s recent remark against the farmers calling them as ‘lazy’.

Police were deployed at all the entry points of the town. They prevented the entry of agitating farmers. About 250 policemen from various police stations of the district were deployed. Some farmers were arrested even before they entered the taluk.

Deputy Superintendent of Police Mahanthesh, who arrived at the town at 5 am, took the taluk BJP President L Suresh and Youth wing president Madrahalli Nagendra into preventive custody at their respective houses.

Later, BJP district vice president Niranjan Kumar was arrested in a filmy style in front of the taluk office. It is alleged that the DySP and police had manhandled several BJP workers.

Most of the shops had downed their shutters on the main road. The bandh was partial near the Old Bus Stand, KSRTC Bus Stand and Ooty-Mysuru Road. About 70 per cent of the shops were closed till afternoon at Kodihalli circle, Chamarajanagar Road and near Venkateshwara theatre. However, business was usual from afternoon. Banks and theatres were not closed.

Police had clamped prohibitory orders and Section 144 was in place. However, Congress party supporters did not take part in the bandh. They had kept their shops and business establishments open.

All the BJP men and farmers, who were arrested, were released later in the evening.
 

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