Cauvery dispute: BJP stages protest against ruling Congress govt in Karnataka

The BJP said the Congress government is sacrificing the interests of farmers to woo Stalin-led DMK government in Tamil Nadu on behalf of their leader Rahul Gandhi for political reasons.
File photo of water being released from crest gates of KRS reservoir. (Photo | Udayashankar S)
File photo of water being released from crest gates of KRS reservoir. (Photo | Udayashankar S)

MYSURU:  BJP, which had planned to block the Bengaluru-Mysuru Highway to protest against the release of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu, limited its protest to a dharna on Monday after the police did not give permission to block the road.

Hundreds of BJP workers and leaders gathered in front of Jayachamaraja Wadiyar Circle in Mandya and protested. Mandya MP Sumalatha Ambareesh, who too joined, questioned the government’s decision to release water when farmers and the local population do not have enough water.

Sumalatha said she urged Chief Minister Siddaramaiah to instruct Cauvery Neeravari Nigam Limited officials to stop water release. Former chief minister BS Yediyurappa, former minister Dr CN Ashwath Narayan and other leaders who were expected to take part in the protest did not as the highway blockade was cancelled at the last minute.

Mandya MP Sumalatha Ambareesh joins the protest by BJP workers, against release of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu, in Mandya on Monday | Express
Mandya MP Sumalatha Ambareesh joins the protest by BJP workers, against release of Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu, in Mandya on Monday | Express

Meanwhile, following the BJP Core Committee meeting on Monday, former chief minister Basavraj Bommai said, “The state government has failed to state clearly the existing quantum of water in Cauvery river, rainfall, Karnataka’s need, Tamil Nadu’s need and also the ground realities.’’

Former minister R Ashoka said, “Congress is adopting an indifferent attitude towards the state and its people on Cauvery. It is trying to please its I.N.D.I.A. partner DMK so that Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi are happy. To earn DMK’s goodwill, the ruling party is sacrificing the water needs of the state and drinking water needs of the city.”

BJP will hold a protest on the Cauvery issue in Bengaluru on Wednesday, the day the government has called an all-party meeting to discuss the issue. Another protest will be on August 29. Asked if they would boycott the all-party meeting, Ashoka said, “We will not, but we will oppose Congress’ stand.”

IT-BT Minister Priyank Kharge told TNIE, “There is nothing for Congress to learn from BJP in safeguarding Karnataka’s interests. Everyone knows the hollow achievements of the army of 25 MPs.”

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