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With a live crocodile, farmers threaten officials over powercuts in Karnataka

Fed up with frequent powercuts that have plagued the state of late, farmers in Karnataka have started using unorthodox negotiation methods, including threatening electricity board officials with a live crocodile!

In a video that went viral on social media on Monday, farmers from the Ronihal village of the Kolhara taluk were seen bringing a live crocodile to a HESCOM power station in the Vijayapura district, where they threatened to leave the reptile if officials did not guarantee uninterrupted power supply.

According to reports, the villagers, by bringing the crocodile to the doorstep of the power, wanted to demonstrate the very tangible threats they face.

They explained that dangerous reptiles, including snakes and crocodiles, came on to their fields in the darkness, thereby posing serious threat to the residents of the village.

The villagers also demanded unrestricted power supply, arguing that the lack of power was killing their crops, especially with many parts of the state experiencing a drought.

While the crocodile roped in for the demonstration was later reportedly rescued by forest officials, the unorthodox method of protest caught eyeballs.

Indeed, Karnataka has been facing a power crisis, and DH earlier reported that the state is facing unexpected demand of more than 16,000 MW in October.

While the state government has chalked out a plan to mitigate the shortfall in electricity across the state, the options listed are understood to be costly for a state that is already overburdened with multiple ‘welfare guarantee’ schemes.

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, meanwhile, has attributed to increase in power consumption due to drought, citing the increased use of pumps by farmers in the absence of adequate rains this year.

(Published 24 October 2023, 12:13 IST)

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