Chikkamagaluru/Madikeri: Chief Minister Siddaramaiah assured a delegation from Chikkamagalur of forming new taluks in the next budget, in a meeting at his home office "Krishna" on February 17, whereas Kushalnagar observed bandh following the decision of the government of not naming it in the proposed list of 48 taluks.
The delegation apprised the chief minister by placing facts including the hardships faced by people in Kudremukh who had to travel 68 kms to reach taluk head quarters Mudigere whereas the Dakhsina Kannada border is 150 kms away.
Keeping the above in view and the population of Kalasa which is around 40,000 the delegation demanded the CM to name Kalasa as a new taluk.
The CM assured the delegation of positive response after talking to his cabinet colleagues G Parameshwar, Kagodu Thimmappa and D K Shivakumar.
MLC Motamma and former MLC Gayathri Shanthegowda led the congress delegation.
Kushalnagar town observes bandh
Following the non inclusion of Cauvery area (Kushalnagar and surrounding areas) in the list of new taluks, several organisations had called for bandh on March 19. Business establishments remained closed as people supported the bandh call, irrespective of the party affiliations. Bus and auto rickshaw services were not affected but tourists visiting the district faced hardship as shops and hotels remained closed in the town.
The protestors formed a human chain near the main circle and expressed their dissent against state government’s decision for over one hour. They felt, despite the town fulfilling the eligibility criteria for a new taluk, it had been ignored by the government. The demand for a new taluk has not materialised despite people from 20 villages supporting the cause. Strategically located, Kushalnagar town with access to Mysuru, Hassan and Mangluru deserved a fair deal, they observed. They urged the government to form a new taluk by including 20 villages and warned of continued protests till the fulfillment of their demands.
Convener of the movement V P Shashidhar,TMC President M M Charan, ZP member Chandrakala, District BJP President B B Bharathish, Dalit leader K B Raju, KRV District President P K Jagadish, G L Nagaraj were among those present during the protests.
Adequate security arrangements were in place with two circle inspectors, three sub-inspectors and over 150 constables manning the town on the bandh day.