Gujjars hold mahapanchayat; Section 144 in Bharatpur

To finalise the preparations for an agitation slated for May 21, around 1,500 villagers attended a 'mahapanchayat' called by the Gujjar community in the Adda village of Bharatpur district on Tuesday. ANI file photo

To finalise the preparations for an agitation slated for May 21, around 1,500 villagers attended a 'mahapanchayat' called by the Gujjar community in the Adda village of Bharatpur district on Tuesday.

Also, the outcome of a meeting held with the state government over their demand for 5% reservation within the OBC quota was discussed.

On Monday night, representatives of the Gujjar community had held a meeting with Rajasthan ministers over the quota demand in Jaipur, which, according to the Gujjar leaders, remained inconclusive.

Gujjar leaders had set a deadline of May 15 for the Raje government to act on their demand to bifurcate the reservation for other backward classes (OBC) category and give the Gujjars 5% reservation.

Presently, the community has 1% reservation within the legal limit of 50% Gujjar comm-quota.

Himmat Singh, the spokesman of the Gujjar Arakshan Sangarsh Samiti, expressed his disappointment and said they have not made much progress during the talks. He did not disclose details.

State Parliamentary Affairs Minister Rajendra Rathore told reporters that the discussion was "positive".

He further said the Gujjar leaders assured him that the talks will be held in a peaceful manner.

Apart from the mahapanchayat, the Gujjar community held two separate meeting in Marauli village by Bainsala supporters.

Security beefed up

Ahead of the mahapanchayat, elaborate security arrangements were made in the entire district for the safety of the public property.

The police have sought six Rajasthan Armed Constabulary (RAC) companies to tackle any untoward situation if arises, police sources said.

Owing to a threat to create agitation on May 21, Section 144 has been imposed in Bharatpur district till May 31.

The Rajasthan Assembly had in October last year passed a bill to raise the OBC reservation from 21% to 26% to provide 5% quota to the Gujjars and other castes.

However, the high court stayed the bill as it would have increased the reservation to 54%. Later, the Supreme Court also directed the Rajasthan government not to exceed the 50% reservation limit.

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Gujjars hold mahapanchayat; Section 144 in Bharatpur

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