Undeclared bandh in Mandya; protests intensify

Undeclared bandh in Mandya; protests intensify

Movement of vehicles affected on B'luru-Mysuru highway

Tension gripped the district for the second day on Wednesday, after the government decided to release water from the Krishnaraja Sagar (KRS) dam to Tamil Nadu, abiding by the Supreme Court’s directive.

There was undeclared bandh and sporadic protests in Mandya, Srirangapatna, Pandavapura and Maddur taluks. The protesters burnt the effigies of Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalitha at many places.

Shops had opened in the morning, but as soon as the news water release spread, protesters gathered at Sanjay Circle and decided to intensify the protest. They were seen moving on motorbikes, forcing the shopkeepers, theatres and petrol bunks to close down.

Incidents of stone pelting were also reported from parts of the city. With intensified protests in Mandya, Srirangapatna and Maddur, the Mysuru-Bengaluru highway was closed for vehicular traffic by the protesters. Banks, post offices and government offices were forced to close. Members of Kranti Yuva Shakti performed a mock funeral of Jayalalitha, Siddaramiah and Karnataka’s counsel  Nariman, atop a private bus.

Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha members, led by MLA K S Puttannaiah tried to lay a siege to KRS dam, but were prevented by the police. Later, they staged a protest in front of the Cauvery Neeravari Nigam’s office and demanded water to be released into the canals.

The protesters, who locked the pump-house near Melapura in Srirangapatna taluk, which supplies water to Mysuru city, did not respond to the pleas by Mysuru Mayor B L Bhyrappa, who visited the spot in the morning.

Six lorries with Tamil Nadu registration were damaged near Bhoothanahosuru near Mandya city. Farmers had got down into Cauvery river and staged a protest in Srirangapatna. Three farmers, who tried to get deep into the water to stage a protest were washed away, but were immediately rescued and admitted to the hospital.
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