BENGALURU, Sept 14 Indian and foreign companies
reopened offices and staff trickled back to work in the
technology capital Bengaluru on Wednesday, after two days of
violent protests over access to water from a river severely
disrupted life in the city.
Multinationals like Amazon.com, as well as Indian
technology firms such as Infosys, were among major
employers who had told workers to stay home on Tuesday while
riot police enforced a curfew in parts of the city.
"We are working today," said Sarah Gideon, spokeswoman for
An Amazon spokeswoman said its employees had returned to the
office and its delivery service was running as normal.
The protests erupted after India's Supreme Court on Monday
ordered Karnataka state to divert some water from a river to
neighbouring Tamil Nadu state, reigniting a long-simmering
dispute in the region about who gets to use the water.
At least two people were killed in clashes between
protesters and police.
Police said on Wednesday they had lifted curfews imposed in
16 areas, but officers were still on the streets in large
numbers to keep the peace.
"The city is back to normalcy," Deputy Commissioner of
Police M.G.N. Kumar said on Twitter.
Local buses and the metro network were operating again.
Shops and street kiosks had also reopened.
During the violence, demonstrators stopped vehicles with
Tamil Nadu registrations, pulled passengers out and torched cars
and buses while pelting police with stones, police and witnesses
The protests have hit the image of Bengaluru as the
tech-savvy and sophisticated face of a modern, urban India where
well-paid workers flock to gleaming business parks and provide
technology services to clients across the globe.
Businesses in the city, with an estimated population of
around 10 million, have faced four days of disruption this month
from the water dispute and an unrelated trade union-organised
strike on Sept. 2.
Protests over the sharing of water from the Cauvery river
have flared up before, but the ability of protesters to bring
large parts of the city to a halt has underlined the
vulnerability of Bengaluru-based businesses to social unrest.
(Reporting by Robin Paxton, Tommy Wilkes and Krisna N. Das;
Editing by Mike Collett-White)