Suicide bid was stage managed, panel told

BANGALORE, JAN. 12. The September 2002 incident in which three persons jumped into the Cauvery near the Kabini dam site protesting against the release of water to Tamil Nadu was reportedly a stage-managed show, which resulted in the death of one person. This was revealed by B.D. Muddanna, Deputy Superintendent of Police, Hassan division, on Monday before the Justice Mohammed Anwar Commission of Inquiry.

The commission is probing the farmers' agitation and suicide of a gram panchayat member, Guruswamy, in connection with the sharing of the Cauvery waters between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. The commission began its hearing on Monday.

Mr. Muddanna deposed before the commission that Guruswamy, Ramesh, and Shivalinga, protesting against the release of water, jumped into the river on September 18, 2002, not with an intention to commit suicide. "They wanted to swim across the river and climb out at an inconspicuous place. With this act, they wanted to create a rumour about the suicide among the villagers," he said.

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