Despite the Jat community assuring that their protest on Sunday will be peaceful, the government is not taking any chances. Around 55 companies of paramilitary forces have been deployed in several districts and certain mobile phone services have been suspended in Sonipat district.
Section 144 of the CrPC has also been enforced 1 km on either side of the National Highways and railway lines. A round-the-clock control room in Chandigarh will monitor and provide assistance wherever necessary.
The move to secure infrastructure and strengthen security presence in the regions comes after the earlier Jat quota agitation in February witnessed much violence. Around 30 people died in the violence and several crores worth of property were damaged.
President of Akhil Bharatiya Jat Aarakshan Sangharsh Samiti, Yash Pal Malik said that the protests would be peaceful. “The protests would be held in 15 districts at designated spots, mostly in villages. We will not be blocking rail or road traffic,” he said. Khap panchayats, however, will not be part of the agitation.
The Jats are protesting for fulfillment of several demands including reservation, withdrawal of cases registered following the protests in February and compensation to families of those who died.
Additional Chief Secretary, Home, Ram Niwas said that the government is fully prepared for handling any protest. He said the companies of paramilitary force included CRPF, RAF, ITBP and BSF have been deployed.
District Magistrate, Sonipat, K Makarand Pandurang, issued orders to ban all internet services, including Internet 2G, 3G, 4G, Edge, GPRS and Bulk SMS sent via mobile, under Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code with effect from June 4. This ban would be effective till further orders.
Pandurang said that there were chances that these services might be used to spread wrong information and rumours.
Police in Hisar had registered a case of sedition against an unknown person on Friday for circulating a message, which warned of a violent stir, on WhatsApp.
In Rohtak, the District Administration issued notices to four persons for violating Section 144 imposed in the district by pitching tents for dharna without permission of the competent authority. The notices have been issued to former Sarpanch of village Rithal, Umed Singh, Sombir Singh, resident of village Jasiya, Ashok Balhara of Dev Colony and Vijaydeep of Rohtak, for pitching tents near Kanhi Chowk in village Jasiya. They were directed to remove the tent and give clarification within two days.
Marches were held by teams of police and paramilitary forces in several districts. Orders have been issued against sale of petrol and diesel in bottles and containers. Barricades have been put up at entry points of several towns.
SP Jind, Rakesh Kumar Arya has issued instructions that special care be taken of dharamshalas and statues which were targeted during the earlier protest. He further said that residences of MPs and MLAs will be protected.