Farmers clash with police in Bengaluru; protest rally cripples traffic

Farmers clash with police in Bengaluru; protest rally cripples traffic

Submitted by rajiv on Thu, 2016-03-03 15:29 Bengaluru: Hundreds of farmers from Kolar and Chikkaballapur, who had arrived in the city on tractors to demand irrigation projects and better drinking water facilities for the dryland regions, have paralysed traffic in Palace Guttahalli, near Windsor Manor and surrounding areas.Flag-waving farmers clashed with policemen in Guttahalli, with many of them trying to break through police barricades.Farmers wanted to move towards the CM's house but the police resorted to lathicharge and halted their march at Palace Guttahalli itself. Several farmers sustained injuries during the lathi-charge. The police detained several hundred farmers, including well-known leader Kodihalli Chandrashekhar, as a precautionary measure.Due to the protest, traffic was seen crawling at a snail's pace at Cauvery junction. With the evening rush hour set to begin, major traffic pile-ups are expected.Security has been beefed up near Freedom Park where farmers are expected to converge son.Earlier, traffic ground to a halt near the assembly and Airport Road as angry farmers demanded answers from the Siddaramaiah government. There were reports of stone-pelting and a BMTC bus as well as several private vehicles were damaged during the protest.Farmers are angry that the government did not take note of their 160-day-long protest demanding permanent irrigation facilities.With an estimated crop loss in 70 percent of sown area, Karnataka has become the first state in the country to declare drought in the rabi season. It has sought a Central aid of Rs1,400 crore.Last year, the state witnessed more than 1,000 farmer suicides - the highest in a decade.Watch Video    (With ANI inputs)