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Gujjar-Raje Govt talks on, off, on...

india Updated: Jun 11, 2008 00:06 IST
KS Tomar
KS Tomar
Hindustan Times
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After initial hesitation, Gujjar leader KS Bainsala finally agreed to send his delegation to Jaipur on Wednesday for the main negotiations with the Vasundhara Raje government on the community's demand for Scheduled Tribe status.

The Rajasthan government's chief negotiator SN Thanvi told Hindustan Times on the phone from Bayana in Bharatpur district on Tuesday that he had received confirmation from Bainsala that his delegation would participate in talks on Wednesday evening in Jaipur.

"It is a welcome step and Gujjar representatives will get an opportunity to discuss all the issues which were raised by Colonel Bainsala in his previous letter sent in the morning. He has not spelt out anything about preconditions in his new communication to the government," Thanvi said.

Earlier on Tuesday, the negotiations between agitating Gujjar leaders and the Rajasthan government ran into a roadblock, with Bainsala putting forth two new preconditions for further talks in Jaipur.

The fresh demands included release of Gujjar men and women protestors lodged in jails and withdrawal of charges of sedition and damage to railway tracks against 10 senior community leaders, including Bainsala.

Both sides had earlier agreed in the preliminary talks in Bayana on Monday that the main discussions would take place in Jaipur on Tuesday.

Gujjar leaders said they were shocked by a new move of the Rajasthan government to register cases of sedition and damage to railway tracks against Bainsala and his associates at a Bayana police station in Bharatpur district.

In retaliation, Bainsala said in a letter to the state government, "It will not be possible for us to resume the main dialogue with the government unless the cases registered against women protestors are withdrawn."

The letter also said "the government should also release those 15 Gujjar agitators who were arrested from the SMS hospital on Sunday."

The state government had sent a fresh letter to Bainsala on Tuesday morning, requesting him to come to Jaipur for a dialogue. The government said in its letter that "a congenial atmosphere has been created after the conclusion of preliminary talks at Bayana."

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