Hundreds of activists belonging to various labour and farmer unions, most of them belonging to the Dalit community, started their three-day protest against the district administration and the state government on Monday.
The Pendu Mazdoor Union, the Dehati Mazdoor Union, the Pendu Khet Mazdoor Union and others are demanding Rs 10-lakh compensation to a family, whose three-year-old daughter Priyanka died two weeks ago at Fateh Jalal village here, residential plots to landless, the release of the Dalits who were arrested in ‘false’ cases in Balad Kalan in Sangrur district.
A faceoff between the protesters and the administration was averted when the police closed gates of the DC complex to stop protesters from entering the office for holding a protest. Angered union members sat on the road and raised slogans against deputy commissioner KK Yadav and ADCP-I Jasvir Singh.
As soon as they erected tents on the road for their three-day protest, the ADCP with a force came outside and held discussions with them over the venue of the protest. Then, the ADCP asked the police force to clear the parking lot of the PUDA office after which union members shifted their protest from the road to the parking lot. The traffic on the road remained blocked for two hours.
Later in the day, the district administration decided to hand over a cheque for Rs 3 lakh to Priyanka’s family. Till date, her body had been lying in the mortuary of the Sacred Heart Hospital since her death on July 13.
Pendu Mazdoor Union’s secretary Kashmir Singh Ghughshor alleged that the government has failed to accept their demands despite their prolonged protest. He demanded strict action against the gram panchayat of Fateh Jalal for negligence to rectify the default of dirty water supply despite repeated pleas by the victim’s family.