Ongoing tension in village Baladkalan in Sangrur district on Wednesday took political colour as PPCC President Partap Singh Bajwa and BJP MP Vijay Sampla came to extend support to the protesting dalits. Both made separate visits to extend their supports to the protesting members in this village.
Tension in this village is continuing from June 27 when 117 acres of panchayat land was auctioned under heavy police cover for about 29 lakhs as per the annual affair. A clash occurred between a group of dalits led by Mukesh Malaud with police authorities in which more than 25 persons including about 6 women were injured. These also included 11 injured police personnels. Police following this incident had booked 41 dalits under section 307 ( attempt to murder) and all of them are in jails as of now.
Dalits of Jameen prapti sangrash committee which was constituted about 4 months back only were demanding that land must be auctioned at not more than 10,000 per acre rate and the auctioned price was too high. A similar tussle had also occurred in village Baupaur in Sangrur in May where again SCs wanted land to be given at only 2.75 lakh per annum against Rs 8.5 lakh kept as reserve price for auctioning that land.
However in Baladpur, though auction was complete but protest is still continuing as members of committee are demanding release of their arrested persons and also to cancel the auction.
Partap Singh Bajwa today joined the protesters in dharna . He was accompanied by dalit leader Chaudhary Santokh Singh- MP from Jalandhar and Sangrur leaders including Vijay Inder Singla- EX MP and others were also along with him. A dalit woman who was injured during clash today alleged that she was discharged without giving proper treatment. Bajwa demanded withdrawl of cases against dalits and condemned lathi charge of police.
He also stated that lowering the price of auction was a genuine demand and it should be accepted. Playing political card he stated that Congress had voiced the concerns of dalits while SAD had betrayed them.
He demanded that the panchayat land reserved for the dalits in every village should be auctioned in a transparent manner and at affordable reserve price and as per law 1/3 rd land is to be reserved for SCs. He alleged in most of the cases, such auctions were benami and this practice must stop. He also visited Sangrur jail to meet 41 dalits who were booked under 307 on June 27.