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Schools, offices shut, protesters demand Centre's intervention in Mahadayi dispute

Schools, offices shut, protesters demand Centre's intervention in Mahadayi dispute

Several offices and commercial buildings such as malls, markets etc were shut as several Karnataka organisations called a state-wide bandh on Thursday.

The state government has deployed police personnel to maintain law and order situation. Private firms, including IT majors, remained closed or let employees work from home. The aim was to pressurise PM Modi, who was expected to visit Karnataka on January 28, to ask Goa to release the necessary quantity of water to Karnataka.

Very few hotels, restaurants and eateries were opened in the city, and stray minor incidents of stone-throwing were also reported with the bandh organisers targeting shops that refused to down shutters. Shah said despite "desperate attempt" to disrupt the rally here by organising the bandh, "we have managed to hold it and been successful at it".

Karwar: Normal life was not affected as the bandh called by pro-Kannada and farmers' organization over the Mahadayi dispute evoked no response in Uttara Kannada.

In a tit-for-tat move to the bandh call during BJP President Amit Shah and Prime Minister Narendra Modi visits to Karnataka, the party's state unit on Wednesday made a decision to observe district-specific shutdown during Congress chief Rahul Gandhi's state tour. Hoping to end Congress' rule in the state, BJP is banking on Modi and Shah to boost its prospects in the state where the Grand Old Party too is on a strong wicket.

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Shettar also urged Rahul Gandhi to spell out his party's stand on the issue.

Stating that neither Congress, nor the government, has anything to do with the bandh, he had earlier asked BJP to request Kannada organisations against organising the bandh. "But the programme will go on as planned", he said.

What is the Mahadayi river water dispute?

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, who led an all-party delegation in 2015, has been insisting on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's intervention to end the deadlock, which people dub as a delaying tactic. The dispute of Mahadayi water sharing grew since last two decades after the Karnataka former barrages and canals to divert water for meeting the requirements of some districts like Bagalkot, Belgavi, Gadag and Dharwad which have faced water scarcity problem.

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