19 trains diverted amid Gujjar quota protest in Rajasthan

Nineteen trains have been diverted and one train has been rescheduled as protests continued by members of the Gujjar community in Rajasthan’s Bharatpur on Monday, demanding reservation in education and jobs in the state, according to Western Railway, news agency ANI reported.

“This time our delegation will not go anywhere to hold talks with the government. If they want to talk, they can come and meet us here on the railway track,” Hardev Singh Paowta, a core committee member of Rajasthan Gurjar Community, told news agency ANI.

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“We postponed our protest midway in February last year due to Pulwama attack. For two years, we have been waiting for the government’s decision but our demands remained unfulfilled. We blame the bureaucracy here. This time we have decided not to indulge in any table talks or dialogue with the government behind closed doors,” Hardev Singh added.

Meanwhile, there are reports that the Gurjar community has been divided into two factions, one faction of the Gurjar Reservation Committee led by Himmat Singh Gurjar has agreed with the Rajasthan government’s cabinet sub-committee on 14 points following talks on Saturday. While the other faction led by Gurjar leader Vijay Bainsla is continuing with the protests.

“The youth are not getting employment. There is anger amongst them. Our movement will continue. We spoke to Gehlot Ji, but nothing has happened so far,” Vijay Bainsla, Gurjar leader, said earlier.

Rajasthan government on October 26, 2018, passed a bill that increased the Other Backward Classes (OBC) quota from 21 per cent to 26 per cent. In December 2018, the Rajasthan government also approved one per cent reservation for Gujjars and four other backward castes (OBCs).

These communities are getting one per cent separate reservation under the legal limit of 50 per cent reservation meant for the most-backwards category in addition to OBC reservation.

(With ANI inputs)

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