Chandigarh: Mobile internet services were on Friday blocked by the state administration in Rohtak and Jhajjar after the Jat community of Haryana intensified their agitation for reservation in jobs and educational institutions.
As per initial reports, Road and rail links have been jammed due to the Jats’ ongoing stir. Meanwhile, additional 25 companies of paramilitary forces have been called in to counter protesters.
The Haryana government has also called an all-party meeting today to discuss the situation in the wake of Jats’ continuing agitation for reservation in jobs and educational institutions.
Agriculture Minister OP Dhankar had said yesterday that an all party meeting has been convened on Friday to discuss the issue and the cabinet has appealed to the agitating Jats to call off their agitation in the larger interest of the state.
The agitation by the Jats in support of their demand for reservation affected normal life in various districts for the fifth day on Thursday.
Clashes erupted between two groups in Haryana's Rohtak town on Thursday evening as the agitation by Jats spread in the state and threw normal life out of gear in many districts.
Pro and anti-Jat reservation protestors clashed near the district court complex in Rohtak. Several people were beaten up in the process and people threw chairs at each other during the clash.
Two motorcycles were set on fire during the clash.
Reports from Rohtak said that the Haryana Police tried to remove Jat protestors from the Jind chowk area but had to retreat as the protestors pelted them with stones and bricks.
Authorities in Rohtak and other districts ordered imposition of prohibitory orders, banning the assembly of five or more people at a place.
Even as the protests by the Jats - demanding reservation in jobs and educational institutions - spread to more areas, losses continued to mount for the railways, roadways, transporters and other private operators due to road and rail blockades put up by agitators.
Parleys between Jat leaders and Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar had failed to resolve the deadlock on the issue.
The Haryana cabinet also met on Thursday to review the situation arising out of the ongoing agitation by Jats.
Road and rail routes were blocked around Rohtak town, 75 km from Delhi, and at other places in Jhajjar, Sonipat, Hisar, Bhiwani, Kaithal and Jind districts. The Rohtak-Delhi railway track has also been blocked. No state roadways buses are able to leave or reach Rohtak town.
People in Rohtak faced inconvenience as essential supplies were disrupted. Students were unable to attend classes due to blockades. Some schools and colleges have been shut since Monday.
Protestors in Hisar district, 240 km from here, blocked the NH-10 (Delhi-Hisar) and the Hisar-Chandigarh highway, as well as railway lines in the area also, including the Hisar-Bhiwani and Hisar-Ludhiana tracks.
Jat leaders warned that the agitation will not be withdrawn till the Khattar government came out with substantive action on their demands.
"The Khattar government did not show any sign to resolve the matter. They did not come up with any concrete proposal for the Jat community at a meeting held in Chandigarh yesterday (Wednesday)," said Jat leader Satbir Punia, who attended the meeting.
The Haryana government on Wednesday announced doubling of quota for the EBC (Economically Backward Classes) category to 20 percent after the meeting, which was rejected by the Jats.