The protest took place at Maurya Circle in Bengaluru on Thursday and was attended by several senior Congress party leaders in the state.

Congress protests against Yediyurappa govt over handling of floods in north Karnataka
news Protest Thursday, August 29, 2019 - 19:22

The Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) held a protest in Bengaluru criticising the Karnataka government's response to the heavy rains and landslides in parts of the state and called for a special Assembly session to discuss the floods which took the lives of 88 people this month.

The protest took place at Maurya Circle in Bengaluru on Thursday and was attended by several senior Congress party leaders in the state. 

Speaking at the protest, former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said that in spite of a BJP-led state government and a BJP-led central government, the response to the heavy rains and floods was poor.

"Yediyurappa has been the Chief Minister for 20 days but he has worked alone without a council of ministers. There was no government in place and Yediyurappa was in Delhi when there were floods here. Has the Centre released funds promised for Karnataka after all the visits made by Yediyurappa?" Siddaramaiah asked.

He further accused the BJP of failing in its first task after forming the government in the state. He asked Yediyurappa to announce a special Assembly session to discuss the damage caused by floods in Karnataka.

His words were echoed by former Water Resources Minister DK Shivakumar. "We don't want to do politics and we want to cooperate with the government. Call for a special Assembly session and let us discuss the losses suffered and how we can compensate them. It is necessary to find the right solution for this urgently,” said Shivakumar.

Thursday's protest marks the first agitation by Congress leaders since the BJP came to power last month. The state received 279% more than normal rainfall between August 3 and 10, the highest recorded in the state in 118 years. The spell of rainfall caused floods in 21 of the 30 districts in the state and also triggered landslides in the Malnad region of the state.

The heavy rainfall in the state's northern districts led to a high inflow of up to 6 lakh cusecs of water into the Krishna river, leading to floods in Belagavi, Bagalkot, Raichur and Yadgir.  Floods were also reported in Shivamogga, Chikkamagaluru, Dakshina Kannada, Udupi, Uttara Kannada and Gadag districts. The central government had approved Rs 1029.39 crore immediate relief for damages caused by floods in Karnataka.

Yediyurappa confirmed that Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit the state in September. The Chief Minister visited Kodagu on Thursday to discuss the damages caused by landslides in the hilly region. 

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