Gujjars occupying the railway tracks in Rajasthan’s Bharatpur district with the demand for reservation on Saturday threatened to intensify their agitation from November 9. Gujjar supremo Kirori Singh Bainsla had earlier given an ultimatum to the State government to fulfil the demand for 5% quota in the most backward class (MBC) category.
The blockade of the Delhi-Mumbai rail route at Peelupura village and the Bayana-Hindaun road near Chhonkra continued on Saturday, leading to diversion of many trains and cancellation of the Rajasthan Roadway buses in the region.
Col. Bainsla addressed a meeting of the community leaders at Sikandra in Dausa district and announced that an indefinite protest would be launched and more highways across the State blocked from November 9.
Contrary to earlier indications, Sports Minister Ashok Chandna did not reach Peelupura to meet the agitating Gujjars till Saturday evening.
Some leaders of the Gujjar Aarakshan Sangharsh Samiti had met the members of a Cabinet Sub-Committee in Jaipur and signed an agreement comprising 14 points last week. However, there has been no headway on the issues of appointments to backlog posts and the benefit of 5% reservation in the ongoing recruitments.
Rival faction’s appeal
A rival faction of Gujjars and the traders in Bharatpur’s Bayana tehsil appealed to Col. Bainsla to call off the agitation and vacate the railway tracks in view of the inconvenience being caused to the public and local businesses.
The candidates appearing in an ongoing police constable recruitment examination are also finding it difficult to reach their exam centres.
Gujjar leader Vijay Bainsla said the ruling Congress had promised in its manifesto for the 2018 Assembly election to clear the backlog of vacancies, but no action was taken after it came to power.