The speakers criticised Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas M. Veerappa Moily for championing the project.

Hundreds of students from various colleges joined political leaders on the streets demanding the withdrawal of the controversial Yettinahole diversion project, here on Saturday.

The protesters – under the banners of Karavali Jeevanadi Netravati Samrakshana Samiti and All College Students’ Union – vented their ire against the elected representatives for having pushed for the project that would see nearly 24 TMC of water being lifted from Yettinahole towards Chikballapur, Kolar and Tumkur.

Calling it a “kidnapping of our river”, environmental activist and coordinator of Sahyadri Samrakshana Sanchaya Dinesh Holla said the project was more about allowing contractors to make money rather than providing water to the thirsty.

The speakers criticised Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas M. Veerappa Moily for championing the project. “He [Mr. Moily] has betrayed the district for a seat in Chikballapur. Now, if his son runs from here, we’ll divert him too,” said M.G. Hegde, a member of Tulu Nadu Rakshana Vedike.

Students of St. Aloysius College also held a protest on their campus. Principal of the college Swebert D’Silva urged the students to resist the “injustice” meted out to the district through the project.

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