Bengaluru: Life was normal in Karnataka with transport services, educational institutions and offices functioning as usual on Thursday despite a state-wide bandh called by several organizations demanding reservation in jobs.

The Karnataka Sanghatanegala Okkuta called for a bandh on Thursday demanding the implementation of the Sarojini Mahishi report that recommended job reservation for Kannadigas in the state.

"The state cabinet is already working in this direction and we are in the process of drafting a policy of reservations for Kannadigas even within the private sector," Suresh Kumar, state education minister, who handled the labour department until recently, said on Wednesday.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government under B.S. Yediyurappa was working on measures to define a 'Kannadiga', he said.

Karnataka's economy has grown on the back of technology- driven companies that have used resources in the state and across the country to compete globally.

In 2016, the then Siddaramaiah-led Congress government released draft amendments to the Karnataka Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Rules of 1961 recommending 100% reservation for Kannadigas in blue-collar jobs in private sector.

Karnataka chief minister Yediyurappa, during his Independence Day speech in Bengaluru, also said Kannadigas should get "the lion's share" of employment opportunities.

The demand for reservation in jobs is at the heart of the migration problem faced by urban centres across the country. A perceived threat to local language and culture are also part of the larger migration issue.


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