Legislators held, uneasy calm in Mandya

Mysore Oct. 31. An uneasy calm prevailed in Mandya on Thursday with no fresh outburst of violence following the imposition of the three-day curfew in the aftermath of Wednesday's mob frenzy over the Cauvery issue.

Police arrested the Mandya Raitha Hitarakshana Samithi President, G. Made Gowda, and other leaders for violating prohibitory orders on Wednesday and produced them in court, which remanded them in judicial custody till November 14. Among those arrested were the Congress MLA, M.S.Atmananda, and the MLC, Siddaraju, who were leading an indefinite fast at the Silver Jubilee Park.

Mr. Made Gowda told presspersons they did not plead for bail, as they had not committed any mistake. He appealed to farmers in the district to continue the "Jail Bharo" programme. Curfew is also in force in Maddur, K.M.Doddi, Srirangapatana, and Pandavpura, and the situation was tense but under control.

Mandya wore a deserted look as the authorities relaxed curfew only for two hours in the evening to enable the people to procure essential commodities.

The Rapid Action Force (RAF) and the Karnataka State Reserve Police (KSRP) patrolled the streets of Mandya and strictly enforced curfew forcing the people to stay indoors. A Press party was roughed up by the police while newspaper vendors were at the receiving end of the police wrath.

The Deputy Commissioner of Mandya, B.P.Khaniram, said the curfew would be in force till the tension eased. The situation would be reviewed continuously to facilitate a decision on relaxation of curfew for the people to procure essential commodities.

The police rounded up more than 200 people in connection with Wednesday's mob violence in which two government vehicles were set ablaze.

Road transport throughout Mandya District remained paralysed, and the Bangalore-Mysore Highway was out of bounds for motorists. Train services were suspended and people had to take a detour via Channarayapatna and K.R.Nagar to reach Mysore.

The KRRS leader, K.S.Puttanaiah, has urged the authorities to lift the curfew as farmers were staging a hunger strike in a "peaceful manner".

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