Hubballi: While the bandh in all districts of the Malaprabha river basin was largely peaceful on Friday, farmers vented their anger against Prime Minister Narendra Modi by taking out his mock funeral procession and even selling tea on the streets of Hubballi to ridicule his humble background. Shouting slogans against Mr Modi and setting tyres on fire, they demanded that he intervene in Karnataka’s Mahadayi river dispute with Goa and get them the water they needed for drinking and irrigation.
The farmers also stoned a car with a Goa registration number in Nargund and blocked the National Highway-218 between Hubballi and Vijaypur. With a large number of farmers descending on Nargund and Navalgund from nearby drought -prone villages the police was out in force to ensure law and order. The towns were deserted with business establishments closed and KSRTC buses and private vehicles keeping off the roads. Various organisations took out bike rallies in several parts of the region in support of the bandh and burnt effigies of Goa CM Manohar Parikkar and other BJP leaders. Hundreds of women took out a procession holding empty pots in Dharwad and a procession of dogs was taken out in Haveri to demand Karnataka’s share of water. There was tension at Hubballi railway station as police tried to stop protesters from staging a rail roko agitation and also outside MP Pralhad Joshi’s office as farmers tried to lay siege to it in protest against the Centre’s indifference to their plight.