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Jats withdraw stir, assures Khattar govt peace during Feb 15 Jind rally of Amit Shah

The Haryana chief minister held talks with Jat leaders to pacify them as they had threatened to disrupt the BJP chief Amit Shah’s proposed bike rally.

india Updated: Feb 12, 2018 12:27 IST
Pawan Sharma
Pawan Sharma
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
Jats,Jat quota,Amit Shah
Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar.(Sanjeev Verma/HT File Photo)

The reservation-seeking faction of Haryana’s Jats, who had threatened to disrupt the February 15 Jind rally of BJP chief Amit Shah, called-off their stir on Sunday night after a six-hour meeting with chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar in Delhi. The Khattar-led BJP government’s attempt to hammer-out the peace pact with the Jat leaders continued till midnight and the breakthrough came after the third round of meeting. “The All India Jat Arakshan Sangharsh Samiti (AIJASS) president Yashpal Malik has agreed to withdraw the agitation. He has also appealed to the Jats to maintain peace,” Amit Arya, media adviser of Khattar, said.

“The government has assured us that it will withdraw all cases registered during the 2016 Jat reservation agitation,” Malik said.

“The government also assured us that the OBC Bill will be passed in this Lok Sabha session. In Haryana, the government will submit the data of reservation in high court before March 31. Believing once again in the government, we have decided to cancel our Jind protest,” he added.

Both the sides held a joint press conference at Haryana Bhawan Delhi after brokering the truce.

Major relief for admn

The AIJASS’s decision to withdraw the stir has come as a major relief to Khattar administration. The Jats had put the Khattar administration on the back-foot through their threat of not allowing the BJP to hold its Jind rally.

Sunday’s meeting was aimed at mollifying the agitated Jats. The worried BJP was working overtime to ensure that Shah’s rally passes off without any glitch.

“The government, while remaining within its jurisdiction, will withdraw cases registered during the Jat reservation agitation,” a government spokesperson said in a statement.

Some Jat leaders had also vowed that they will not let Shah’s chopper land in Haryana until their demands were met. The threat of the Jats is such that the Centre has deployed 150 companies of the paramilitary forces in the state to maintain law and order.

Earlier, the issues which threatened to derail the talks were disagreement over withdrawing the cases transferred to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) by the high court. Two such cases given to the CBI pertain to loot and arson at finance minister Captain Abhimanyu’s house.

Another key issue was the Jats’ demand of FIR against Khap leader Sube Singh for allegedly attacking Yashpal Malik in Fatehabad in August 2017 and the CBI probe to find BJP state president Subhash Barala’s alleged role behind the attack.

Chief minister Khattar, union minister Chaudhary Birender Singh, transport minister Krishan Lal Panwar, BJP in charge Dr Anil Jain and BJP leader Bhupender Yadav held talks with the 50-odd members led by Malik. The third round parleys began at past 10pm in which Malik, along with his dozen-odd supporters, was closeted with Khattar and his team of bureaucrats.

A battery of senior bureaucrats and police officers, including chief secretary DS Dhesi and DGP BS Sandhu were camping in Delhi Haryana Bhawan to assist the CM since Saturday.

Sources say both the sides stuck to their stated stands and refused to budge initially. The logjam continued as the Jats dug their heels, asking the government to fulfil their long-pending demands. The government tried to mollify them by banking on the steps it had taken to fulfil the demands. Finally, the Jats relented.

(With inputs from Hardik Anand)

First Published: Feb 12, 2018 09:36 IST