Gujjar-govt talks inconclusive, agitators seek CM`s assurance

Fresh talks between agitating Gujjars and the government today remained inconclusive with the protesters seeking an assurance from Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot.

Last Updated: Dec 30, 2010, 18:39 PM IST

Bayana/Jaipur: Fresh talks between agitating
Gujjars and the government today remained inconclusive with
the protesters seeking an assurance from Chief Minister Ashok
Gehlot that quantifiable data to justify quota in state jobs
will be expeditiously submitted to the Rajasthan High Court.

"The meeting was held in a cordial manner and another
round of talks is likely to be held soon. Gujjars are
satisfied on several other matters but the 5 per cent
reservation issue is yet to be resovled," G S Sandhu,
Principal Secretary Urban Development, said after holding the
meeting at a village near Pilukapura, the epicentre of the
agitation in Rajasthan`s Bayana area.

"Several other matters including withrawal of cases
against the protesters were discussed at the two-and-a-half
hour meeting besides the main issue of 5 per cent quota. They
are almost satisfied with the government in regard to other
demands, but not on the quota issue," he said.

Sandhu said that the 11-member Gujjar delegation led by
Bhim Singh Khatana demanded that the Chief Minister, state
minister Jitendra Singh, Union Ministers C P Joshi and Sachin
Pilot should visit the agitation site to meet the protesters
and assure them that the government will speed up the case in
the High Court.

"We are informing the authorities in Jaipur about the
demands of the agitators and the next round of meeting is
likely to be held soon," he said. Official sources said
another round of talks may be held tomorrow.

The High Court on December 22 had stayed the operation of
an Act granting five per cent reservation to Gujjars and
directed the state government to undertake a data collection
exercise to justify the quota for members of the community.

A division bench comprising Chief Justice Arun Mishra
and Justice Mahesh Bhagwati asked the government to complete
the quantifiable data collection exercise within a year to
justify the quota for Gujjars under the Special Backward Class
category.

Besides Sandhu, the government team at today`s talks at
Kaalwari village, around 2 km from Pilukapura, comprised
Bharatpur Divisional Commissioner Rajeshwar Singh, Bharatpur
District Collector K Kunal and Pali District Collector Neeraj
K Pawan.

Sandhu parried a question on who will represent the
government in the next round of parleys with the agitators.

Khatana, leader of the Gujjar delegation, said he will
convey the outcome of the talks to his leader Kirori Singh
Bainsla.

This was the second round of talks between the two sides.
The first round of talks was held on Sunday at Pilukapura with
Energy Minister Jitendra Singh representing the state
government.

Gujjars have been blocking Mumbai-Delhi rail tracks and
Jaipur-Agra National Highway and several other roads for the
past ten days in support of their demand for five per cent
reservation in government jobs.

-PTI