August 30, 2016
Chennai: Farmers of the delta region staged protests at prominent railway junctions and roads throughout Tamil Nadu, including Chennai, demanding the release of Cauvery water for irrigation. The protest received support from various other associations all over the state.
The agitations were launched following the statement by the Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah that his government will legally face the case filed by the Tamil Nadu government to release water from the Cauvery. The protesters also demanded that the state government take action against the Kerala government’s decision to build a dam across the river Siruvani.
Protests were held in 1,000 roads and 100 railway junctions in Tamil Nadu today. In Chennai, the protesters tried to stop the train movement at Tambaram, Egmore, and Central stations. As preventive measure, buses from Karnataka were stopped at the Tamil Nadu border.
The organizers of the protest, the Aanaithu Vivasayigal Kootamaippu, were supported by all the major parties, including the DMK, Congress, BJP, CPI, CPIM, and the STPI. Various trade associations, including the merchant welfare association, lorry drivers’ association, milk vendors’ association, and the railway labourers’ association, expressed their support.
Around 200 farmers were detained by the police at the Egmore railway station, and nearly 100 were held at Central station this morning. The farmers were raising anti-Karnataka slogans. With the Kuruvai crop failing, the farmers are now pinning their hopes on the Samba cultivation, but that too would suffer if water is not released, said one of the protesters.