Peaceful protests in Karnataka over Cauvery water release

Bengaluru: Amid tight security, pro-Kannada activists, farmers and traders continued peaceful protests on Friday in Bengaluru, Mandya and Mysuru against Karnataka releasing Cauvery river water to Tamil Nadu.

Defying prohibitory orders, about 100 members of the Kannada Okkuta (federation) staged a protest march from Town Hall to Mysore Bank circle and demonstrated at Freedom Park in Bengaluru urging the state government to stop releasing the river water to the neighbouring state.

Police, however, took the protesters, including federation president Vatal Nagaraj, Kannada Rakshane Vedike convener Praveen Shetty and Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce president Sa Ra Govindu into custody and whisked away from the venue.

The prohibitory orders, imposed on September 12 after violence broke out in parts of the city and extended to September 25, prevent assembling of more than five persons in public places to maintain law and order and prevent any untoward incidents.

Hundreds of farmers and traders also staged protests at Mandya, Srirangapatna and Mysuru and criticised the state government for failing to protect their interests.

In view of the shutdown in Tamil Nadu, security was stepped up in the city and the four districts across the river basin, especially in the border areas where Tamil-speaking people live to ensure their safety and security of their property.

Inter-state bus services to and from Tamil Nadu remained suspended. Transport vehicles, including trucks were stranded on both sides of the border.

“We have deployed enough security at all the 16 entry points on state and national highways from where people and vehicles pass through to and from Tamil Nadu,” start Inspector General of Police (central) Seemanth Kumar Singh told reporters at Attibele in the city’s southern part.