BANGALORE: Normal life remained disrupted in Karnataka as the dawn to dusk bandh called by several pro-Kannada organizations under the banner of Karnataka Sanghatanegala Okkoota calling reservation of jobs for the sons of the soil in both government and private sectors began on Thursday.
In the state capital, the bandh hit daily commuters as Ola, Uber cabs, and autorickshaws have stayed off the roads. However, buses are plying as usual. State-run transport corporations, including the Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) and the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC) said that their services were continuing as normal.
Bangalore University postponed all post-graduate examinations scheduled for Thursday in the wake of bandh. However, the government said schools and colleges would function as usual. Police said no permission had been given for any rally and warned of action against those forcing closure of businesses and shops, PTI reported.
A violent incident of pelting stones at a Tirupati-Mangaluru bus was reported from Farangipet. The bus belonged to the Andhra Pradesh Road Transport Corporation. The incident occurred at around 5.30 am at Bantwal taluk of Mangaluru district. No one was injured in the incident.
The organisations are demanding the implementation of a report by former union minister Sarojini Mahishi that recommends a certain percentage of jobs to Kannadigas in public sector undertakings, private companies, and multinational companies. The report was submitted in 1984 but is yet to be implemented.
Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa had on Wednesday appealed to the protestors to desist from causing any inconvenience to the general public. He assured his readiness to talk to protesters.
"Those agitating, if they are willing to talk to me, I'm always ready to talk to them. We have already done several things that are possible (to implement the Sarojini Mahishi report), what other things can be done, I'm ready to talk to them," Yediyurappa was quoted by Times Now as saying.
Praveen Shetty, the leader of one of the factions of KRV, said that a huge rally will be taken out from Anekal Toll Gate to the residence of Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa. The CM will then be presented with a memorandum by representatives of various protesting organisations, demanding the implementation of the report.
"We have decided to join the sit-in demonstration because it is about the job guarantee to the children born in Karnataka. It is about employment to those who are born in this soil," Shetty told reporters (with inputs from Times Now and Indian Express)
Image Credit: Indian Express