Mangaluru: There was lukewarm response to the bandh called by Kannada outfits on Thursday over the Mahadayi river water dispute in the coastal districts with private buses, autorickshaws and taxis operating as usual and shops remaining open for business.
In fact, the day saw Tulu activists taking on protesting Karnataka Rakshana Vedike activists at the Mangaluru Railway Station over their silence on the Yettinahole project.
The KRV activists were returning after staging a rail roko at the Mangaluru Central Railway station when they were confronted by Tulu activists over some derogatory remarks posted by a KRV leader against the people of Dakshina Kannada on social media and their lack of support for the Yettinahole movement. The police had to intervene to defuse the situation. While Kannada Sahitya Praishad district president, Pradeep Kumar Kalkura admitted that the people of the region did not support the bandh, he claimed they were “emotionally bonded” over such issues. “It is true that the people did not observe a bandh and the reason could be that they are not very connected to this issue. But its not true that we do not give importance to their causes. We are emotionally with them and have protested over the Cauvery dispute and similar issues,” Mr Kalkura added.
A representative of the National Environment Care Federation (NECF) blamed the poor response to the bandh on the neglect of the coastal districts by the government. “Be it Yettinahole or any other environmental issue, the government hardly understands their seriousness,” he deplored....