The Kannada Okkoota — a forum of various Kannada organisations formed to protest against the Cauvery River Authority’s (CRA) directive to release 9,000 cusecs of water to Tamil Nadu — is leaving no stone unturned for the success of the Karnataka bandh given by it on Saturday “to send a strong message to the Centre”.
After holding a meeting of representatives of various pro-Kannada organisations, farmers leaders, labourers and the Kannada film industry, president of the okkoota, Vatal Nagaraj, told presspersons on Thursday that over 500 organisations, including Advocates’ Association Bangalore, the Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) Employees’ Association, KSRTC Kriya Samiti, Autorikshaw Drivers’ Association, Karnataka State Dr. Raj Fans’ Association, Karnataka Dalit Sangharsh Samiti, Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce, Karnataka State Government Employees’ Association, Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce and Tamil organisations would extend complete support to the bandh.
There was no change in the Okkoota’s stand with regard to the bandh. He said the bandh was not against anybody, but an attempt to draw the attention of the Union government to what he described as the “injustice meted out to Karnataka”. Warning that it would launch a jail bharo agitation in case Prime Minister Manmohan Singh refuses to rescind the CRA order, Mr. Nagaraj regretted that even Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar, who had assured the people that the water would not be released, ditched Kannadigas by going back on his decision.