Protest for water flies high all over Kolar and CB Pur districts

Protest for water flies high all over Kolar and CB Pur districts

Youngsters in Chintamani play cricket on the road deserted due to the bundh on Monday. The protest organised on Monday, demanding a permanent irrigation project to be implemented in the district, drew large numbers of people. BJP members, however, were conspicuous by their absence.

Most citizens too responded to the call for a district-wide bundh positively. Shopowners pulled down the shutters of the shops, all nationalized banks were closed and even schools and colleges as well as government offices declared holidays on Monday.

As a result, the bus and railway station, which are normally crowded, wore a barren look.

Various groups

Dharnas and processions were organised in the city by enthusiastic protesters belonging to various parties and organizations.

Activists belonging to the Congress and the JD(S) traversed the main roads in the city on their bikes. They asked people to shut down their and moved ahead shouting slogans demanding irrigation facility.

Members of the District Lawyers' Association led a procession on the streets of Kolar. Members of various pro-Kannada organizations organised a protest in Gandhivana.

The District Pre-university College Lecturers' Association, District Backward Classes Committee, Car Drivers' Welfare Association of Kolar city, Lorry Owners' Association, Social Democratic Party of India, District Valmiki Leader Community Protection and Welfare Association were among the other organizations who organised protests demanding irrigation for the district.

In Srinivaspur

The citizens of the town cooperated with the protesters and voluntarily participated in the bundh on Monday.

Shops, cinema theatres, markets, hotels and other commercial centres were closed. Transport facility too came to a standstill and the citizens walking down the streets was a common sight on Monday.

Rayalpad, Gounipalli, Ronur, Yaldur, Lakshmipura, Rojenahalli Cross and other places of the town had citizens actively participating in the protest.

Member of Legislative Council Y A Narayanaswamy addressed a gathering in front of the Mini Vidhana Soudha in Srinivaspur.

“The bundh today has been productive as a meeting with people's representatives is being organised on February 17 to discuss the matter of the permanent irrigation project in the district,” he said. There is no shortage of funds for the project, but only will-power of the government. An incessant fight should be carried on to get water before the people start suffering due to shortage of water, he added.

A request letter asking for permanent irrigation was also handed over to tahsildar Dr S Rupashri.

Shidlaghatta closed

The bundh call received good response in the town.

The sericulture market saw no business. Shops, hotels, threatres and even petrol bunks were closed voluntarily. The bus stops and all government offices wore deserted looks. Schools and colleges too were given holidays.

Some of the protesters burnt tyres on the Chikkaballapur-Chintamani main road near the bus stop.

A human chain was also formed by the protesters, who went about crying slogans demanding a permanent irrigation project for the district.

In Bangarpet

Citizens in Bangarpet responded positively to the bundh call for implementation of a permanent irrigation project in Kolar district, which is suffering due to fall in underground water level.

The town wore a deserted look from quite early in the morning on Monday.

Activists from various political parties, except the BJP, as well as many progressive groups participated in the protest. Also members from organizations representing Hindus, Muslims and Christians were present at the procession.

Since shortage of water is most commonly witnessed by women, especially homemakers, on Monday too, the number of women who participated in the bundh equaled that of men.

The bundh is said to have begun in the town at dawn, with a BEML factory worker stopping the buses carrying staff. The buses taking the workers to the factory were stopped at different places beginning 4 am.

Autorickshaws and buses but travelers too were hardly seen in the town on Monday.

In Chintamani

The bundh was total in the taluk. Shop owners downed the shutters on their own volition in the town and all over the taluk.

Cinema houses and petrol bunks also remained closed. The major thoroughfares in the town like Bangalore Road, Kolar Road, Shidlaghatta Road and Chelur Road and the town bus stand wore a deserted look.

Police had made elaborate security arrangements to prevent any untoward incidents. Schools and colleges had declared a holiday as a precautionary measure.

Government offices functioned with skeletal staff. Lawyers did not take part in court proceedings. Vehicles, including buses, remained off the roads. Members of Kannada organisations took out processions in the town.

Representatives advised to resign

Kembodi Narayanaswamy urged the people's representatives in Kolar and Chikkaballapur districts to resign from their respective posts as a way to demand a permanent irrigation project for the district.

For several decades, all major parties, including the Congress, the BJP and the JD(S), have enjoyed being in power and have also made the best use of it. Many people from the district have also worked as ministers. Yet, the district lacks permanent irrigation facility. The common man has taken up arms now.

Therefore, the representatives belonging to both Kolar and Chikkaballapur districts should resign and offer support to the cause of the citizens. They should urge the State government to action, Narayanaswamy said in a press release on Monday. 

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