Protests over river water turn violent in Indian IT hub

Train, Metro services suspended; vehicles torched

Bengaluru—Violence erupted in southern part of Karnataka on Monday after the Supreme Court directed the state government to release 12,000 cusecs of Cauvery water+ to Tamil Nadu. At least half-a-dozen vehicles bearing Tamil Nadu registration numbers have been set ablaze in Bengaluru and Mysuru.
Though no casualties have been reported, tension prevailed on the Bengaluru-Mysuru highway with mobs targeting Tamil Nadu trucks+ and cars. Traffic on the highway too came to a standstill as farmers’ organisations and Kannada activists staged rasta-roko agitations.
According to police sources, a family travelling in a multi-utility vehicle was pulled out in Mysuru and their vehicle was set ablaze. In Bengaluru, a truck was set on fire in Timber Yard Layout while miscreants went on a stone-throwing spree in Yelahanka and Anekal.
The miscreants alleged that the Supreme Court’s directive to release 12 cusecs of water till September 20 would worsen the water crisis facing the state.
A vehicle with Tamil Nadu registration plate was torched in Mysuru’s Chamundipuram on Monday. The agitators stopped the vehicle, asked the occupants to get down and set it on fire.
They also maintained that that the attack on vehicles was also a retaliation to the assault on tourists from Karnataka in the temple town of Rameshwaram in Tamil Nadu on Monday morning.
Namma Metro train services have been temporarily suspended in Bengaluru following few incidents of violence in the city.
Chief minister Siddaramaiah has appealed to the people not to provoke and get provoked by mischief-mongers.
Unidentified men hurled six crude bombs— petrol-filled bottles — at New Woodlands Hotel on Dr Radhakrishnan Salai in Chennai in the early hours of Monday.
The men, numbering 15 who came in three autorickshaws, damaged windowpanes and furniture in the reception, an ice cream parlour and an office room at the hotel.
The hotel is owned by Kannadigas, and the attack happened in the backdrop of the Cauvery water dispute between Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. It happened a day after a Tamil youth was attacked in Bengaluru for posting messages on social media supporting Tamil Nadu.
Security guards at the Woodlands Hotel told police that the attackers raised slogans against the Karnataka government and Kannadigas. They also stuck a message, written in Tamil, on a windowpane in the ice cream parlour. The message read: “If Tamils are attacked continuously in Karnataka, Kannadiga workplaces here (in Tamil Nadu) will be attacked. Kannadigas live here too. Beware.’— Agencies

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