Members of the Gujjar community in Rajasthan’s Bharatpur district on Monday continued with their protest demanding reservation in education and jobs in the state. They have also refused to visit any government office to interact with the administration. “This time our delegation will not go anywhere to hold talks with the government. If the government wants to talk, they can come and meet us here on the railway track,” a protestor was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
A large number of Gujjars in the Peelupura village of the district had on Sunday launched their agitation by blocking railway tracks. Officials said the protest turned violent after some agitators damaged the Mumbai-Delhi railway tracks passing through Peelupura. They later uprooted the fish plate of the Mumbai-Delhi tracks and some blocked the Bayana-Hindaun route, the officials added. The tracks were cleared after some time.
Bharatpur district collector Nathmal Deedal said that state minister Ashok Chandna met Gujjar leader Kirorilal Bainsla in Peelupura where they held a round of “positive talks.” “Yesterday also we had a meeting with one faction of the Gujjar community who were satisfied with the assurances of the state government,” Deedal said on Sunday.
Gujjar leader Vijay Bainsla, however, said that they had not spoken with anyone. “The youth are not getting employment. There is anger among them. Our movement will continue. We have spoken to Gehlot Ji, but nothing has happened so far,” he told ANI. “We have not spoken to anyone. Youth is unemployed, 25,000 jobs are stuck and nobody is talking about it. This protest will continue until our demands are not fulfilled,” Bainsla added.
“We have spoken to Gehlot Ji four times in the past but nothing materialised. It’s been two years, how much patience do they demand from us?” Bainsla asked.
Due to the protest, railway traffic was also halted on the Delhi-Mumbai line passing through the Kota division following which at least 450 personnel of the railway police force (RPF) and government railway police were deployed in Kota railway division, officials said. Alert was also sounded across all the stations of the division.
Officials have said that an extra police force will be also sent to the Gujjar-dominated areas in districts across eastern Rajasthan, especially in Bharatpur and Karauli. “We are monitoring the situation from the headquarters,” Saurabh Srivastava, additional director general of police, law and order, had said.