The community Gujjars has been demanding a five percent reservation in government jobs and education in Rajasthan. They have been protesting from the last four days over the reservation demand. Agitating Gujjars sat on railway tracks at Malarna Doongar near Sawai Madhopur causing the cancellation of 23 trains and the re-scheduled on February 9. On Sunday, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said to the reporters that the government is ready to open talks with Gujjars.
At the same time, he criticized the violence and blocking of road and train traffic by the protesters in the state. “The government is ready to open discussions with the agitating community,” said Mr. Gehlot adding that it is unethical sitting on railways tracks to protest.
According to the officials, the agitation turned violent after the community had a clash with the police personnel near Dholpur. Three police vehicles were set on fire by the protesters while police fired tear gas shells to scatter them. A senior police officer said that five policemen were injured by stone-throwing but no one was arrested. The Chief Minister claimed that the government will investigate the violence in Dholpur on Sunday.
The Gujjar Aarakshan Sangharsh Samiti (GASS) launched an agitation on Friday and started blocking highways and traffic on the Delhi-Mumbai railway. “We have a good chief minister and a good prime minister. We want that they listen to the demands of the Gujjar community. It isn’t an uphill task for them to provide reservation,” an agitating member of the Gujjar community told the sources.
In order to control the violence, several control rooms have been set-up in the violence-hit areas of Rajasthan. In a reply to the threat of the Gujjar’s to intensify the agitation, Mr. Lather said, “We have deputed additional forces in the violence-prone areas to tackle any untoward incident.”
Around 18 trains scheduled to run on Sunday, 10 on Monday, 12 on Tuesday and 15 on Wednesday were canceled due to the protest.