Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Film stars take to streets, Cauvery agitation continues

Film stars take to streets, Cauvery agitation continues
New Indian Express

BANGALORE: The widespread agitation against the final verdict of the Cauvery water disputes tribunal turned colourful, with hundreds of film stars and others connected with the Kannada tinsel town joining the stir, even as people in the Cauvery basin districts of Mandya, Mysore and Chamarajanagar continued the protest on Tuesday.

Deputy Inspector General of Police Shankar Bidri told UNI that though widespread protests continued in the basin, no untoward incident was reported. Trains were run between Bangalore and Mysore, but road traffic was hampered for some time in the afternoon.

Hundreds of artists from the Kannada filmdom took out a huge procession in the city, which had come to a grinding halt on Monday following a state-wide bandh call given by various organisations.

Top stars like Vishnuvardhan, Shivarajkumar, Raghavendra Rajkumar and Puneet Rajkumar, the three siblings of late matinee idol Rajkumar, Tara, Malashri, Jayanti and scores of other stars went on a procession from the Karnataka film chambers of commerce to Raj Bhavan.

Besides actors, film producers, exhibitors, distributors, stunt artists, directors and dancers joined the procession, taken out amid tight security by a 2,000-strong police force, which included RAF personnel.

Meanwhile, the opposition Congress took exception to Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy's proposed meeting with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on the issue and demanded that he first discuss with them before going to Delhi.

Raising the issue in the assembly, leader of the opposition N Dharam Singh felt that there was no need to rush to meet the Prime Minister when the state had not taken a final stand on the February five verdict.

In Mandya, vehicular movement continued to be badly affected with farmers agitating at various points along the Bangalore-Mysore state highway. They put up road blockades at Boodanur, Hosaboodanur and Gejjegere villages and in Mandya city.

They also continued cooking food right on the middle of the highway. Students, lawyers and even some seers took part in the stir.

Widespread protests continued in Mysore and Chamarajanagar district for the second week. Protesters took out a procession and burnt the effigies of 28 members of parliament at Santhemarahalli circle in Chamarajanagar.


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