THE PROTESTS in Karnataka over the Cauvery water-sharing dispute with Tamil Nadu claimed a second life Tuesday when a 29-year-old man succumbed to injuries sustained while fleeing a police lathicharge in north Bengaluru the previous night, police said.
More than 300 people have been arrested so far over the protests that broke out across the state on Monday, with police continuing a manhunt for those who instigated the violence.
Police have imposed prohibitory orders across 16 police station limits in Bengaluru until Wednesday midnight to prevent further attacks. Security in the city has also been strengthened with the deployment of 20 companies of central forces, including CRPF and CISF, at sensitive locations.
Karnataka Home Minister G Parameshwara said the Supreme Court order, asking Karnataka to release water to Tamil Nadu, and the attacks on Kannadigas in the neighbouring state had prompted “genuine activists” to hold protests in the state.
“But some anti-social elements joined the protests. We will find out the background of the accused once police complete the arrests,” said Parameshwara.
“Curfew has been imposed in the limits of… R R Nagar, Byatarayanapura, Magadi Road, Vijayanagar, Kengeri, K P Agrahara, Chandra Layout, Yeshwantpura, Mahalakshmi Layout, Peenya, RMC Yard, Rajgopal Nagar, Rajajinagar, Nandini Layout, Jnanabharathi and Kamakshipalya in the city. We request the public to remain at home until further orders to avoid untoward incidents,” said state police chief Om Prakash.
“But the curfew will not affect Bakr-Eid celebrations in the city. We will allow people to celebrate the festival,” said Prakash. Police, meanwhile, identified the man who died on Tuesday as Kumar (29), a resident of Hegganahalli in north Bengaluru and a native of Kunigal, who was employed with a gas agency in the city. Kumar slipped and fell from the third floor of a building around 9.30 pm Monday while being chased by police during their crackdown on vandals, said police, adding that he was returning home from work at the time.
Earlier, the state government announced a compensation of Rs 10 lakh for the family of Umesh Kumar (25), who was killed on Monday night in police firing in Hegganahalli.
Home Minister Parameshwara said the Rapid Action Force was forced to open fire at a mob after they set a police vehicle ablaze, and attacked a sub-inspector and constables.
Parameshwara said a total of 97 vehicles were set on fire.