Bandh over Mahadayi halts Bengaluru, parts of Karnataka

With the Mahadayi issue going out of control, the BJP asked Rahul Gandhi to direct the Congress in Goa to agree to sharing water with Karnataka.

Further the police said elaborate security arrangements have been made across the state to ensure that no untoward incident occurs. Various pro-Kannada organisations led by the Karnataka Rakshana Vedike and Vatal Nagaraj, leader of Kannada Chalavali Vatal Paksha (KCVP) are leading the bandh all over the state.

Although, the frequency of cabs and auto rickshaws were very low in Bengaluru during the day, normalcy returned with the reopening of buses and shops in the evening.

The project is being undertaken to improve drinking water supply to the twin cities of Hubballi-Dharwad and districts of Belagavi and Gadag.

Speaking to reporters in Mysuru, BJP MP Pratap Simha called it a government sponsored bandh, alleging that the intention was to disrupt Shah's rally.

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Pro-Kannada outfits called for a bandh demanding PM Narendra Modi's intervention in the inter-state Mahadayi river water row with neighbouring Goa. So there will be no buses moving inside the city, and even those planning to go out of the state will have to wait till the bandh is over.

The 12-hour, dawn-to-dusk bandh has been called by Kannada Chalavali Vatal Paksha (KCVP) and other fringe outfits.

The Goa Ministry for Water Resources Development (WRD) on Thursday formed a special team to monitor whether Karnataka or Maharashtra governments continue with the works of building and operating canals along the Mahadayi basin for diversion of water. Taking note of the shutdown, several private schools and state run offices in most parts of the state had declared holiday. Hoping to end Congress' rule in the state, BJP is banking on Modi and Shah to boost its prospects in the state where the Grand Old Party too is on a strong wicket.

While the trigger for the bandh seems to be the deadlock over the Mahadayi issue, the timing of the bandh-coinciding with the last day of BJP's 75-day Parivarthana Rally-smacks of politics. They are also of the opinion that such bandhs cause inconvenience to the common man, with none of the political parties willing to resolve the Mahadayi water sharing crisis.


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