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Jats give Haryana govt more time for quota, won’t protest now

At least 30 people were killed in February when Jat protesters clashed with police and other groups and burnt down buildings and vehicles.

india Updated: Mar 19, 2016 00:06 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Jats,Jat reservation Manohar Lal Khattar Munak canal
Jats hold a meeting in Rohtak on March 14 to press for their demand that the state reserve jobs for them.(Manoj Dhaka/ HT photo)

The looming threat of the re-initiation of Jat reservation agitation was pushed back on Friday after Jat representatives and khap leaders held parleys with the Haryana chief secretary and director general of police (DGP).

The BJP government in Haryana is preparing to bring a bill for providing reservation to Jats and four other castes in government jobs and educational institutions. However, it could not be tabled in the state assembly this week due to a lack of consensus among the BJP MLAs.

After a four-hour meeting with the chief secretary, All India Jat Aarakshan Sangharsh Samiti (AIJASS) national chief Yashpal Malik said they have agreed to defer the agitation till March 31 in view of the assurances given by the Haryana government. On the demands being made by Jat representatives and khap leaders, Malik said they suggested that Jats should be included in the existing backward classes (B) category and this quota should be increased to 14 % from the existing 11 %.

“If the 50 % ceiling limit for reservation gets breached, the legislation should be included in the Ninth Schedule of the Constitution to provide it immunity from judicial review,’’ Malik said.

He said they have convened a meeting in New Delhi on March 31 and April 3 to take stock of the situation and decide on the future course of action. On being asked about the ongoing dharna and gatherings of Jats at certain places, particularly in Rohtak, Malik said those were merely symbolic.

Meanwhile, under fire over allegations of inaction during the earlier agitation, chief minister Manohar Lal on Friday talked tough on law and order, saying if anyone had intentions to disturb peace, he should forget about it.

“This government belongs to 2.5 crore people of the state and it came to power with full majority. If somebody has any intention to disturb law and order and create an environment against the government, he should forget it,” Khattar said.

First Published: Mar 18, 2016 17:24 IST