The second round of talks between protesting jats and government panel on Monday, too, failed to break the ice, but the government agreed to form a four-member panel to look into the demand of withdrawal of pending cases against Jats for violence during last year’s stir.
The All India Jat Aarakshan Sangharsh Samiti (AIJASS) president Yashpal Malik said the meeting was neither positive, nor negative, and made it clear that the protests will continue till the government met all their demands.
Haryana chief secretary DS Dhesi, however, said the government panel and AIJASS members agreed over two demands in the Monday’s meeting and discussions are on for the rest.
Sources said during the closed-door meeting, which lasted for about four hours at the guest house of Panipat refinery, about 150 AIJASS members demanded withdrawal of all cases against Jats, release of 60 people arrested during last year’s violence and regular government jobs to at least one family member of 31 people killed in the violence, and increase in compensation to the victim families.
The government delegation has agreed to form a four-member panel of legal experts, in which two advocates will represent the Jats to find out whether the government could withdraw all the cases or not.
The government panel has given assurance to revise the compensation to those who got seriously injured in last year’s violence from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 2 lakh. The next meeting for talks will be organised soon and the panel has sought a week’s time to put their demands before the government.
“The government panel has agreed to form a four-member panel to look into the pending cases against Jats, but we did not see any positive response to the demand for regular jobs to the family members of those killed in the violence,” AIJASS leader Baldev Rathee told HT.
He said the panel assured to form the committee of legal experts soon and sought a week’s time to look into other demands. The panel agreed to accept the demand to increase the compensation to innocent victims of violence.
REASONS BEHIND IMPASSE
Having strong support of opposition parties, the protesting Jats are demanding withdrawal of all pending cases and release of about 60 people booked for last year’s violence. The government officials say that all cases, especially registered under Sections 302 (murder) and 307 (sttempt to murder) of the IPC, cannot be withdrawn. Also three cases of violence, loot, attempt to murder and burning down of house of Finance Minister Capt Abhimanyu are being investigated by the Central Bureau of Investigation and state government cannot withdraw them. The protesting AIJASS members are also demanding regular jobs for at least one family member of those killed in last year’s violence, but the step may irk non-Jats.
The AIJASS has decided to continue with the protests, which entered Day 23 on Monday. They have already given a call to take the fight to Delhi. AIJASS’ president Yashpal Malik has announced to hold a national level rally in Delhi on March 2 and they have decided to gherao Parliament after Holi. Besides, they will also observe February 26 as “black day”. Whereas, sources said next meeting between government delegation and protesting Jats will be organised on February 28.