Security beefed up for Jat 'Balidan Diwas'

Security beefed up for Jat 'Balidan Diwas'

The Centre has dispatched an additional 28 companies of paramilitary forces to Haryana in the wake of  the call to observe ‘Balidan Diwas’ (sacrifice day) on February 19, given by leaders of the agitating dominant Jat community seeking reservation in jobs, among others.

Haryana is on high alert as the ongoing Jat protest entered the 20th day on Friday.

The bloody Jat agitation last February claimed 30 lives. There were widespread incidents of loot, violence, arson and reported rape on the highway. While the current agitation has so far remained peaceful with thousands of protesters squatting on roads across the state, as in the past, the agitation has the potential to spiral out of control.

Talks between the government and leaders of the Jat community have so far remained inconclusive and fresh talks have been declined by community leaders.

Unwilling to see a repeat of last year’s ugly Jat protest, the government is closely monitoring the situation in at least eight districts, which may fast turn into epicentres of protests.

The agitation may intensify after Sunday when community leaders meet to mark ‘sacrifice day’ to pay homage to those who lost their lives in the protests last February. The government on Friday appointed a senior bureaucrat to guide deputy commissioners in the districts hit by the agitation.

Men, women, young and old have joined the protest with full vigour and the numbers are increasing by the day. The fortunate part though is that not all Jat organisations are participating.

This time, the agitation is being spearheaded by the All India Jat Aarakshan Sangharsh Samiti, led by its national president Yashpal Malik. The Jats are demanding reservation in jobs, compensation for the next of kin and withdrawal of cases against community members.

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