Agnipath protest at Ludhiana railway station:Two accused of violence secured over 70% in Class 12
Harmanpreet Singh and Manpreet Singh of Sarabha village were among those held by the police immediately after the violent protest that erupted at the Ludhiana railway station two months ago
Two of the total six youths who were arrested by Government Railway Police for allegedly rioting and damaging public property at the railway station on June 18 during the protests over the Agnipath Scheme, secured over 70% marks in their Class 12 Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) examination as per a recent report of Government Railway Police.
Harmanpreet Singh and Manpreet Singh of Sarabha village were among those held by the police immediately after the violent protest that erupted at the railway station two months ago.
Students of Shaheed Kartar Singh Government Senior Secondary School, Sarabha, Harmanpreet procured 71% in his Class 12 result, while classmate Manpreet secured 74%.
Despite securing decent results in Class 12, the duos’ dream to serve in the Indian Army has now been shattered after the registration of a criminal case against them in relation to involvement in the July 18 incident.
A senior railway police officer said, “They both were intelligent students and scored good marks. They shouldn’t have been the part of the mob which barged inside the railway station to disturb law and order as it was not the right way to protest against any policy of the government. Moreover they even didn’t appear for any Army exam yet. They won’t be able to bag any government jobs in future even when they had capability”.
Both the accused at present are out on bail.
Sukhdev Singh, Harmanpreet’s father, works as a construction supervisor (raj mistri) said, “Harman now does nothing and stays idle. He along with other accused remains busy in attending court hearings and didn’t take admission in any graduation course. He spoiled his life.”
Harmanpreet, meanwhile, expressed joy at securing the 71% result, but also regretted participating in the protest. He said, “I always wanted to join the Indian Army but now I am uncertain about my future. I appeal to the government for forgiveness.”
Manpreet said he wanted to serve in the Indian Army and is planning to prepare for the physical and written exams after completing school, adding, “Since the idea behind getting recruitment for mere four years in the Army did not go down well with many, we all decided to protest but I didn’t know that things would go violent there. Currently I am unable to study further.”
On June 18, anti-Agnipath protesters vandalised property at Ludhiana railway station, following which a total of 30 protesters were arrested by the railway and commissionerate police. According to the officials, around 25 accused had by July 31 already been released on bail.