Karnataka bandh over river dispute: All to know before stepping out of home

Pro-Kannada organisations call for statewide shutdown over Mahadayi river dispute and drinking water crisis
Normal life is unlikely to be disrupted even though the pro-Kannada organisations have called for a state-wide low-key bandh on Monday in lieu of early implementation of the Mahadayi river water dispute.

The bandh, which is being held from dawn to dusk, will be led by Kannada Okoota, an umbrella organisation of the pro-Kannada bodies in the state.

Protestors are slated to organise a protest march from Town Hall to Vidhana Soudha in Bengaluru.

What is the protest about?

Pro-Kannada organisations have called for a bandh to press for a number of demands. While the prime reason is Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s intervention in the Mahadayi river dispute, other demands include farm loan waiver and a permanent solution to the water scarcity problem in parched areas. 

They have also demanded that Maharashtra Ekikaran Samiti activists should be made to leave the state for their alleged anti-Kannada activities in Belagayi, in Belgaum district in Karnataka. 

According to Vatal Nagaraj, head of Kannada Okoota, the protestors are also pressing for action against Tamil Nadu's resistance on the Mekedatu project being facilitated across Cauvery river and the proposal to privatise Bharat Earth Movers Limited (BEML).

Karnataka and Goa expressed conflicting interests on the larger issue of sharing Mahadayi River water. The former had petitioned the Tribunal seeking the release of 7.56 tmcft (thousand million cubic feet) water to Malprabha basin.

Normal life not disrupted

According to reports, the local transport wing, including the bus, auto and taxi services will continue to ply as per schedule. Also, banks and ATMs will also continue to function as normal.

Schools and colleges to remain open

The schools and colleges will remain open today, according to officials. However, private schools have asked the government to increase security in schools where violence is expected. 

The fourth-semester postgraduate exams of Bengaluru University has been postponed, Indian Express reported. Moreover, Visvesvaraya Technological University has postponed its first-year Bachelor of Education examinations and seventh semester examinations.

Buses, autos, metros to run normally

Auto rickshaws, metro, Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) and Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KRSTC) buses will run normally on Monday.

The officials of Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) have said Namma Metro will be operational as well. 

The radio cab services will also be operational, as per the officials of Bangalore Tourist Taxi Operators’ Association.

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