Jat stir resuming? Activists to stage protests at Khattar's events

Jat protests (File) Jat protesters blocking the Panipat-Rohtak National Highway | PTI

Members of the Jat community in Haryana plan to hold “peaceful” protests at public functions attended by Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar and another minister to protest against the BJP government not implementing quota in government jobs and education and not withdrawing cases filed in connection with the 2016 quota stir.

In June this year, the All-India Jat Aarakshan Sangarsh Samiti (AIJASS) had announced that it would be holding dharnas from August 16.

The members of AIJASS claimed that Khattar himself had assured them of withdrawing all the cases registered against the community leaders except for 45 cases.

However, the Jat activists said the state government later went back on its promise.

After the deadline lapsed, Jat community members have now decided to hold protests at public functions attended by Khattar and Finance Minister Captain Abhimanyu in nine districts—Sonepat, Rohtak, Hisar, Panipat, Jind, Kaithal, Dadri, Bhiwani and Jhajjar—said AIJASS president Yashpal Malik.

The protests will later be extended to six other districts, he said.

Accusing the BJP government in Haryana of betraying the Jat community, Malik said, "We gave them [BJP government] enough time; we have been holding peaceful protests and dharnas for several months. However, they have failed to meet our demands, which the government itself had already accepted in previous rounds of talks. We are left with no other option now. As our fresh deadline has expired, we will be holding protests now."

Meanwhile, at a high-level meeting here last week, Haryana DGP B.S. Sandhu had said that all the divisional commissioners and superintendents of police would keep a tab on security arrangements during government functions.

"Discussions would be held with sarpanchs and members of panchayat samitis. If any untoward incident takes place, then the administration would strictly deal with it," Sandhu had said in the meeting, according to an official release.

"Nobody would be allowed to disturb law and order in the state and strict actions would be taken against those who would do so," he had said.

In the past few elections, the Jats had sided with the BJP particularly in 2014 Lok Sabha polls and Haryana and Uttar Pradesh assembly elections.