The Rajasthan government suffered a setback on Saturday when former minister and BJP MLA Kirori Lal Meena resigned from his assembly seat to protest Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje’s handling of the on-going Gujjar agitation.
“The state is likely to sign an agreement with Gujjar leaders under pressure, which is unacceptable to me and my community,” Dr Meena said. “Gujjar agitators have brought normal life to a standstill and the government is taking a lenient view of this. I do not want to continue in the assembly if the interests of my community are hit, so I am resigning from my seat.”
Dr Meena added: “I will not quit the BJP and plan to contribute in the strengthening of the organisation as an ordinary worker.” The former minister had resigned from the ministry in December 2007, after a difference of opinion over Raje’s handling of the Gujjar issue.
Meanwhile, the third round of talks between Gujjar leaders and the state government at the Official Training School on Saturday were inconclusive. Four members of the Gujjar team will leave for Piloopura on Sunday morning to seek Col. Kirori Singh Bainsala’s approval of the state’s proposals, which are secret.
A 28-member delegation of the Gurjar Arakshan Sangharsh Samiti and nine representatives of the state participated in the dialogue, which continued for about four hours. Sources said that the government is ready to provide a separate block of reservation of 4-6 per cent to the community.