Adjoining states witness protests, roadblocks
The Gujjar community’s anger at not being given Scheduled Tribe status spread from Rajasthan to many districts of adjoining states on Wednesday.
Thousands of Gujjars spilled out on to the streets of Meerut and the National Capital Region to protest against the police firing on their clansmen in Rajasthan on Tuesday.
Students in Meerut blocked traffic on the national highway for over an hour while another mob demonstrated on Hapur road and in Panchali village.
In Delhi, NCP MLA Ramvir Singh Bidhuri led a road blockade in Khajuri. He said the community would protest at Jantar Mantar and the Prime Minister’s residence on June 3.
However, Bidhuri did not demand ST status for Gujjars in Delhi, where they are deemed to be in the Other Backward Classes (OBC) category. Only Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir have accorded Gujjars ST status.
In Gurgaon, traffic was blocked at five places. Vehicular movement was disrupted for 30 to 90 minutes on the Delhi-Jaipur, Sohna-Alwar and Gurgaon-Faridabad roads.
In Gautam Buddha Nagar district, Gujjar Samaj Ekta Manch activists demonstrated at the city magisterate’s office and gave a memorandum seeking the Rajasthan government’s dismissal. At Dadri, Jan Morcha activists blocked GT Road for two hours. In Greater Noida, Dev Sena activists demonstrated at the Pari Chowk.
In Rajasthan, incidents of road blockades, arson and stone-pelting were reported from Bharatpur, Bandikui, Karauli, Dausa, Dholpur, Sawai Madhopur, Jaipur, Bhilwara, Chittorgarh and Alwar. Six state buses were set on fire near Bharatpur and two near Sariska in Alwar.
Protests were held and shutdowns enforced in Bhilwara, Jhalawar, Ramganjmandi, Barana, Bhiwadi and Chittorgarh towns. Protestors also blocked the Agra-Gwalior road.