Bengaluru/Chennai Sep 12: One person was killed and another injured in police firing in Karnataka as the Cauvery water sharing row with Tamil Nadu turned violent today, escalating tensions between the two states.
Widespread violence erupted today in Bangaluru and some other parts of Karnataka, while sporadic trouble was witnessed in Tamil Nadu following Supreme Court's modified order on sharing Cauvery water by the two riparian states.
Police opened fire when a mob tried to attack a patrol vehicle at Hegganahalli in Rajagopal Nagar police limits as violence flared up in Bengaluru city with rampaging mobs setting fire to buses and trucks with Tamil Nadu registration plates.
"Two were brought with bullet injuries. One with bullet injury near the heart has died. The other is being operated for injury on right thigh," Dr. Giridhar, Managing Director of Lakshmi Multi-Speciality Hospital, where they were taken told PTI tonight.
Soon after the apex court gave its amended order, directing Karnataka to release 12000 cusecs of water daily to Tamil Nadu till September 20, violence and arson flared up in Bengaluru, with rampaging mobs setting afire at least 30 vehicles bearing Tamil Nadu number plates.
As violence broke out sending a wave of panic across Bengaluru, the city was brought under prohibitory orders till September 14.
A prominent transport company depot in the city bore the brunt with at least 30 buses going up in flames. Managing Director of Salem headquartered KPN Tours and Travels Limited Rajesh Natarajan claimed in Chennai 40 of his buses were set on fire.
Incidents of arson came even as police said they have made elaborate security arrangements with 15,000 policemen being deployed, bolstered by Karnataka State Reserve Police, City Armed Reserve Police, Rapid Action Force, Quick Reaction Teams, special forces, Central Industrial Security Force and Indo-Tibetan Border Police Force.
In view of the deteriorating situation, the Centre rushed 10 companies (about 1,000 personnel) of the special anti-riot paramilitary force RAF to Karnataka. Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh also called up Chief Ministers of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu tonight and assured them all central assistance in handling the law and order situation.
After Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah spoke to Singh, an official statement issued in Bengaluru described the situation as "fully under control". The Union Home Minister responded "positively" to the request for aditional central forces, it said.
Describing the violence in Karnataka as alarming, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa wrote to Siddaramaiah, seeking protection for Tamil speaking people and their property, hours after he had made a similar plea to her.