The Siddaramaiah-led Congress government in Karnataka is all set to celebrate the controversial Tipu jayanthi on November 10, amid call for a Kodagu (Coorg) bandh (shutdown) by several organizations, mainly those belonging to the BJP.
An umbrella organization called Tipu Jayanti Virodhi Horata Samithi has called for the Kodagu bandh between 6 am and 6 pm to oppose Tipu Jayanti celebrations.
The Kodagu district administration imposed prohibitory orders across the district for 48 hours starting 8 a.m. on Thursday.
Issuing the order, Kodagu deputy commissioner Richard Vincent D’Souza said the order does not apply to government events and Tipu jayanthi celebrations at Madikeri, Virajpet and Somwarpet.
The DC said that Tipu Jayanti was being celebrated as per the state government’s direction. The programme will be held at Somwarpet Junior College hall and Virajpet taluk office. “Tourists and citizens need not panic. Only those with invitation will be allowed for the Tipu Jayanti programme,” he added.
The DC said the district administration has banned sale of liquor across the district from November 9 midnight to November 11 morning.
Tipu Jayanti Virodhi Horata Samithi president Abhimanyu Kumar said November 10 was being observed as black day to condemn the ‘murder’ of D.S. Kuttappa in Kodagu during Tipu jayanthi clashes two years ago. “Kuttappa Martyr Day will be observed in all the three taluks in the district,”he said.
Kumar appealed to the district chamber of commerce to support the bandh by shutting down all business establishments in the district. He also appealed to bus and auto owners to support the bandh.
He noted the bandh will not affect marriage functions or any other private celebrations. The bandh will not affect the supply of essential commodities, including milk and medical shops.
Superintendent of Police P Rajendra Prasad said that 40 CCTV cameras have been installed at check posts. An additional SP, 8 DySPs, 23 Inspectors, 68 PSIs, 113 ASIs, 1,500 constables, 27 DAR platoons, 15 KSRP platoons and one RAF have been deployed.
“By giving a call for Kodagu bandh, some people are trying to disturb the peace and order in the district,” alleged Nirvanappa, convenor of Bhoomi mattu Vasati Hakku Vanchitara Horata Samiti.
Tipu Sultan, the 18th century Mysore ruler is considered a tyrant by the Kodavas and Nairs in Kerala besides Christians, mainly Mangalorean Catholics as Tipu had forcibly converted them to Islam.
The Siddaramaiah government decided to celebrate Tipu’s 266th birth anniversary for the first time in 2015, mainly with a view to woo the Muslim votes.
It was competitive politics which made Siddaramaiah to celebrate the birth anniversary of the Mysore ruler as the previous BJP government also did something similar when it introduced Basava, Valmiki and Kanakadasa Jayanthis and declared some as public holidays.