North Karnataka sees violent protests

North Karnataka sees violent protests

North Karnataka sees violent protests

Spontaneous protests marked by violence erupted in parts of North Karnataka on Wednesday in the wake of the Mahadayi Water Dispute Tribunal rejecting Karnataka’s plea for interim relief.

Protests were held at Navalgund and Dharwad city in Dharwad district; Nargund, Gajendragad and Gadag in Gadag district; and in different parts of Belagavi and Bagalkot districts.

Farmers, who have been staging a sit-in for the past 375 days at Navalgund and Nargund demanding the implementation of the Kalasa-Banduri project, blocked the busy Hubballi-Sholapur national highway at Navalgund and Nargund, bringing vehicular traffic to a halt.

They also attacked the JMFC court and the Irrigation Department buildings in Navalgund.
Protests erupt in North Karnataka
Mobs raided many government offices in Nargund, Gajendragad and Gadag and smashed the glasspanes of the court complex in Navalgund. They threw the furniture at the Irrigation Department office outside and broke them. Files were also set on fire.

The police, taken by surprise, could hardly control the rampaging crowd.

The offices of the tahsildar, taluk panchayat, agriculture, public works and other departments were also attacked. Protesters barged into the NWKRTC office at Navalgund bus stand, smashed the furniture and stoned some buses parked in the depot.

In Hubballi, farmers took to the streets and blocked the busy Channamma Circle in the heart of the city for more than three hours. Fearing violence, the private Bendre buses stopped their services.

In Gadag town, protesters blocked the arterial roads and shops and businesses downed their shutters. The office of BJP parliamentarian Shivakumar Udasi also bore the brunt of mob fury. The situation was similar in Bagalkot.

In Belagavi, police detained farmers who tried to block the Pune-Bengaluru national highway. Business establishments at Ramdurg, Savadatti and Bailhongal voluntarily closed for the day.

Police personnel have been deployed at Kankumbi in Khanapur taluk where a wall has been constructed across the canal to prevent the flow of Kalasa water into River Malaprabha.