Karnataka and Tamil Nadu have been embroiled in a longstanding dispute over the Cauvery River water sharing. This dispute has caused various hardships for the people in both states. Recently, the Cauvery Water Management Authority ordered the Karnataka government to release 5,000 cusecs of water to Tamil Nadu for 15 days, leading to protests in Karnataka. Despite the Karnataka government's appeal to the Supreme Court, the court upheld the order, intensifying the protests.
In the midst of this situation, the Kannada Okkuta organisation called for a Karnataka bandh (shutdown) on Friday. Earlier, another organization had called for an IT hub shutdown in Bangalore on September 26, garnering support from various associations. However, when Kannada Okkuta announced the statewide shutdown, several associations withdrew their support for the Bangalore shutdown, causing confusion.
Kannada Okkuta is known for its fight for Kannada rights, and it represents nearly 90 organizations across the state. This bandh has been met with mixed responses from different groups. Vatal Nagaraj, the leader of Kannada Okkuta, has announced a protest march from Town Hall to Freedom Park on September 29.
The Cauvery water dispute has long been a contentious issue between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, leading to sporadic tensions and protests.
Anticipated service closures during Bengaluru bandh
Several services in Bengaluru are expected to be affected during the upcoming bandh (shutdown) called for September 29, 2023.
Here is a list of services likely to be closed:
KSRTC and BMTC buses: The Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) Staff and Workers Federation has expressed its support for the bandh, and as a result, both KSRTC and Bengaluru Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) services are expected to be disrupted.
Private cab services: Ola, Uber Drivers and Owners Association President Tanveer Pasha has announced their support for the bandh and confirmed that private cab services will not be operational on Tuesday.
Schools and Colleges: While the private school union has declared its support for the bandh by wearing black bands, holiday decisions for many schools and colleges are pending and will be decided today.
Restaurants and commercial establishments: Hotel and restaurant associations have extended their support for the bandh, and many establishments across the city are expected to remain closed on Tuesday.
Services that will remain open:
Namma Metro: The Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) will continue to operate metro services across the city without any disruptions.
Emergency services: Essential services, including ambulances, pharmaceutical vehicles, and other vital goods transportation vehicles, will operate as usual. Hospitals and medical stores will also remain open to cater to emergency medical needs.