Amid dissent by the Opposition parties and serious opposition from farmers, the Karnataka Government on Tuesday decided to release 15,000 cusecs of water a day to Tamil Nadu as per the Supreme Court’s directive. The State has also decided to file a modification petition before the apex court in addition to approaching the supervisory committee to convince it about the distress situation due to a deficient monsoon. A decision to this effect was taken by the government after a meeting of the floor leaders of both Houses of the State legislature and MPs from the State.
“Despite severe distress and hardship, we will release water to Tamil Nadu as directed by the Supreme Court. With heavy heart, we have to follow the apex court’s directive though it is very difficult in the prevailing distress situation,” Chief Minister Siddaramaiah told reporters after the meeting.
Meanwhile, the protests by various groups in Karnataka in the wake of the Supreme Court order derailed inter-State movement of people across the Jujuvadi checkpost on Tuesday.
The border was beefed up with Tamil Nadu police as protests started brewing in Karnataka on Monday in the immediate aftermath of the Supreme Court order. Buses from Tamil Nadu stayed put in Hosur from Monday night onwards.
The protests wreaked havoc on the travel plans of people returning back to work from both sides of the State border after a long holiday weekend.
People, particularly those employed in the electronic city, were stranded on Tuesday morning, as buses halted in the Hosur bus stand pre-empting trouble across the border. Tamil Nadu police did not allow T.N.-registered vehicles across the Jujuvadi checkpost, to avert untoward incidents.
The few Karnataka-registered buses plying between Hosur and Bengaluru had filled up, forcing commuters to walk from Hosur to the Jujuvadi post to look for town buses across the border.
Early in the day, Kannada outfits including Rakshana Vedike and Jai Karnataka marched up to the border and staged demonstrations. Over 200 persons affiliated to the outfits raised slogans against Tamil Nadu, even as the border post was strongly barricaded by the Karnataka police.
A Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) bus was stoned by a motorcycle-borne duo in Thanjavur.
In Karnataka, the protests led to traffic blocks, cancellation of bus services to Tamil Nadu and Kerala and halting of shows of Tamil movies. Train services were not affected, said railway officials.
A total of 561 KSRTC buses which pass through the Bengaluru-Mysuru highway including those bound for Mysuru, Udhagamandalam, Wayanad, Chamaraj Nagar and Madikeri were cancelled.