Curfew lifted in Bengaluru as normalcy returns

Bengaluru : Curfew has been lifted in Bengaluru as normalcy returned on Wednesday, two days after violence shook the country’s tech hub in protest against the release of Cauvery river water by Karnataka to Tamil Nadu, police said.

“We have lifted curfew from all the 16 police station limits in the city’s northwest and southwest suburbs as the situation is under control and normalcy has returned,” Bengaluru Police Commissioner N.S. Megharikh told the media.

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The order prohibiting the assembly of more than five persons, however, continues across the city.

Partial curfew was enforced three days since Tuesday after violence erupted on Monday in which one person was killed in police firing and 78 vehicles, including trucks and buses, were burnt across the city.

“Security remains tight across the city to prevent any mischief by protestors, miscreants or anti-social elements,” said Megharikh.

A Rapid Action Force battalion was posted at Attibele in the city’s south suburb bordering Hosur town in Tamil Nadu to prevent any untoward incident and regulate road traffic, he added.

With buses, taxis, autos and metro rail returning to the roads, thousands commuted to offices and workplaces in and around the city.

Passengers going to or alighting at railway junctions and bus terminals in the city and the airport were able to get transport.

“The city is back to normalcy, with shops, hotels, offices, cinema theatres, petrol bunks and private establishments opening in all areas,” said Megharikh.

Most schools and colleges, however, declared a holiday for either Onam festival or as a precaution.

The situation at Mandya and Mysuru in the river basin too was under control amid peaceful protests against the release of water to the lower riparian state Tamil Nadu.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah is waiting for an appointment with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi to seek his intervention in the water dispute.

Siddaramaiah wrote to Modi on September 9 asking him to convene a meeting of the chief ministers of both states to resolve the vexed issue after the Supreme Court told Karnataka to release 15,000 cusecs of river water to Tamil Nadu on September 5 for 10 days.

The order was extended to September 20, reducing the quantum of release to 12,000 cusecs per day.