Centre sends in 4,500 paramilitary forces to assist state govt deal with Gujjar protests
The Rajasthan high court on Thursday reprimanded the state's chief secretary and the director general of police for failing to arrest any Gujjar agitator and allowing people to suffer due to the agitation which has crippled road and rail services in the state.india Updated: May 28, 2015 18:07 IST
The Gujjar agitation for reservation in government jobs entered its eighth day on Thursday, with hundreds of protesters still blocking railway tracks in Pilupura. The Centre has despatched 4,500 paramilitary personnel to assist the state government deal with the situation.
Earlier, the Rajasthan high court reprimanded the state's chief secretary and the director general of police for failing to arrest any Gujjar agitator and allowing people to suffer due to the agitation which has crippled road and rail services in the state.
The HC directed chief secretary CS Rajan and DGP Manoj Bhatt, who appeared before it, to act immediately to remove all road and rail blockades.
"You are conducting meetings at Jaipur and the public has been suffering since the last 8 days. There is no law and order situation right now so go to these places, get the track cleared and report to me tomorrow in person," ordered a single judge bench of the court.
They were also asked by the HC to file an affidavit by Friday clarifying as to why no action was taken under the FIR registered against the agitators.
"You (CS and DGP) being the head of bureaucracy and law and order machinery are not bound to be mere spectators of the political dialogue between the Gujjar agitators and the state government," said Justice RS Rathore.
"We cannot allow people to suffer for these undemocratic agitations. It seems that the both of you have gone senseless towards the plight of the public. We are making it clear in unambiguous terms to you that this court is keen to see that the blockades are removed immediately today itself with the train track and highway clear for movement overnight and we must be understood seriously while observing this," he said.
The observations and order came on a contempt petition pending against Gurjar leaders, including Colonel Kirori Singh Bainsla, since 2008 for violating orders of the high court.
The divisional railway manager and the chief security officer of the Railway Police Force (RPF) of the Kota division were also present before the court.
The court also expressed displeasure over the non-action of CSO in protecting the fish plates of tracks removed in the affected region, crippling rail movement between Delhi and Jaipur.
"The state administration has lodged an FIR under stringent provisions for waging war against the state but not a single named person has been apprehended yet nor the investigation initiated," said Justice Rathore.
The court also asked them to give details of the losses caused to public and private property by the Gujjars' agitation over their demand for 5% reservation in government jobs.
"The high court asked the administration about the steps taken to maintain peace in Rajasthan and calm the Gujjar agitation. There is another hearing tomorrow. Affidavit and progress report has to be filed by the administration," said public prosecutor Laxmikant.
(With agency inputs)