Yuva Sai Sagar

Online news channel!

Tag: hooda

AJL case: Ex-Haryana CM Hooda cries foul, says Centre indulging in ‘political vendetta’

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Former Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda on Saturday alleged that it is the BJP-led NDA government’s modus operandi to hand over the inquiry into the alleged re-allotment of a plot to Associated Journals Limited (AJL) in Panchkula in 2005 to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).Hooda told ANI that the government is indulging in political vendetta and witch hunting by coming after him in the case.”This is their modus operandi. In other cases also they have adopted the same method because once you register a case and then refer to CBI, the CBI does not go for preliminary enquiry. Nothing is wrong done during my tenure. This is just political vendetta and witch hunting. In other cases also they have adopted the same method,” Hooda told ANI.The BJP government in Haryana has handed over the enquiry into the alleged re-allotment of a plot to AJL in Panchkula in 2005 to the CBI.”We handed over the case to CBI a few days back. The agency will soon start its inquiry,” Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar told the media on Friday.Haryana State Vigilance Bureau had registered a case of cheating and corruption against former chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda and four HUDA officials for allegedly re-alloting a plot to AJL in 2005.The case under various IPC sections, including criminal breach of trust by a public servant, cheating, criminal conspiracy and provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act was registered against Hooda, the then Haryana Urban Development Authority chairman, a post held by him ex-officio as the CM, and four of its top officials then, on May 5 this year. The plot had been initially allotted to AJL, the owner of National Herald newspaper, in 1982.After the expiry of the lease period in 1996, the then Haryana Vikas Party goverment led by Bansi Lal resumed its possession. It was reallotted to AJL after the Congress leader came to power in 2005. The vigilance bureau had alleged that the act by the then HUDA chairman and the officials had caused a huge financial loss to the public sector undertaking as the plot should have been sold through open auction instead of being allotted again to AJL. Hooda had then alleged it was political vendetta.With PTI/ANI inputs.

Kashmir conflict: Let’s wean back local militants, says Northern Army commander-in-chief

The outgoing commander-in-chief of the Jammu and Kashmir-based Northern Command, Lieutenant-General DS Hooda, has emphasised the need to improve processes for drawing back into society Kashmiris who had taken to arms.

“Can we do something to get the boys back? That is the concern,” he says, highlighting an aspect of counterinsurgency that most tough-talking militaristic minds tend to neglect, while focussing instead on ‘kills’ and ‘catches’. Hooda, who retires at the end of the month, is keenly aware of the importance of this concern. He and the officers and men under his command have had their hands full as a new militancy has rapidly gained ground over the past year-and-a-half, and large-scale protests and unrest have kept the Kashmir Valley on the boil through the summer and autumn.

Representational image. PTI

Representational image. PTI

Those with a less nuanced perspective might have expected him to talk of the need for battle preparations, fortifications and reinforcements. But it is a measure of how much the army brass has evolved since the ‘proxy-war’-oriented phase of the second half of the 1990s that Hooda emphasises the need to win back those Kashmiris who have at some point taken up arms.

To be sure, he has quietly gone about the core tasks of the army too; extraordinary steps have been taken since mid-September in terms of war preparedness. But Hooda has not lost sight of other priorities in what must be a multi-pronged strategy.

Local sentiment is one of the most important priorities. Each death of a local boy can have a multiplying effect. “The more (a) local is killed, (the more) you will have a reaction,” as Hooda says. For more than a year now, the funerals of young militants killed in action have been highly emotional events, drawing large crowds — and inspiring fresh teenagers to become militants.

These young recruits are sometimes jolted by the less-romantic reality they confront when they leave their homes. So surrender must be made easier — and the rehabilitation of former militants into society made smooth.

The rules only allow militants to surrender at four specified points — two trade and crossing points on the Line of Control, the Wagah border, and Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport. Hooda points out that each of those points is hazardous for those who might want to surrender. For, Pakistani officials keep a hawk-eye on those who want to cross at Wagah and the specified trade and transit points. In fact, it takes several weeks to get through the red tape of permissions that are required to use those crossing points.

The result is that many of those who actually want to surrender try and get to Nepal and then cross the border into India — or find their way surreptitiously across the Line of Control or border. But using either of those methods puts them on the wrong side of the rules. Since they cannot technically surrender thus, they can be treated as terrorists, and of course the laws for that category are daunting.

The trouble for an army commander such as Hooda is that this causes many of those who may changed their minds after getting to Pakistan to remain in the ranks of militants. And, any smart strategist knows that, even if a local militant is often less lethal than a foreigner, a local draws in the wider support of the community — and that can be a far greater challenge in a situation like Kashmir.

The general also refers critically to the post-surrender dimension of policy. “There is no rehabilitation dimension, as far as the surrender policy is concerned.”

Indeed, the message that goes out from those who have surrendered in the past is that it leads to a life of social, economic and political marginalisation, shame and harassment. In many cases, special cells of the local police demand that a surrendered militant report to them regularly, and then force them to do what those cells require.

If militants felt assured that they would be protected by law-enforcers, and be able to fruitfully resume their places as respectable members of society, it might attract more militants to surrender.

For, there are many who realie that the life of a militant is not actually as wonderfully as it is romanticised to be.

First Published On : Nov 28, 2016 07:45 IST

Kashmir unrest may be down, but it’s far from over: We could see a reemergence in 2017

The recent provocation at the Line of Control (LoC), in which a soldier’s body was mutilated, was one more indication that the troubles in Kashmir are not over. There are other indications too, which together paint a sombre picture of what might happen next summer.

Many in positions of authority hope that things would settle down since school examinations have been held, markets are bustling, and traffic is back on the roads. But their expectations ought to be tempered with caution.

The respite is tenuous and it might turn out to be temporary.

A file picture of protesters pelting stones at police in Kashmir. PTI

The first thing that one needs to recognise about the 2016 unrest in Kashmir is that it was not a repeat of 2010. There is no doubt that the internal and external dimensions of the challenge faced in Kashmir have been more intricately linked this year.

So, the return of traffic and exams can’t take away the heavy shelling — including high-calibre artillery — which has killed many people near the LoC and forced even more to relocate.

Besides, militant attacks have taken place sporadically, and there is no doubt that there are plenty of foreign and local militants in the Valley.

Stone-pelting too is not a thing of the past. There have been recent instances of it, including a major one in the Pulwama area on Wednesday.

Another big spurt?

A large-scale unrest such as that witnessed over four months this year could well be repeated next summer. All it would take is a trigger like the killing of militant commander Burhan Wani, which started the unrest on 8 July.

As more evidence continues to emerge, it is pushing analysts to the view that the unrest was planned for the period following Eid this summer. In fact, Lieutenant-General DS Hooda, the commander-in-chief of the Northern Command, is among the many who believe that this year’s eruption had been planned.

From the very next day after Burhan Wani was killed on 8 July, mobs across the Valley, showed a sort of uniformity in their tactics — as if they were following a pattern. The most significant of these tactics were mob attacks on police stations and paramilitary camps.

However, he says that if Burhan Wani had not been killed some other trigger would have been used. Further, those who had planned this year’s unrest are likely to look for an opportunity next summer too, adds Hooda, who is set to retire from the army at the end of this month.
Such a prognosis makes sense. And, the agents provocateurs who have taken control of coordinating the agitations in various parts of the Valley appear to be controlled from across the border.

Leading activists of several organisations including the Jamaat-e-Islami, have played key roles at the ground level. At times, they have benefited from a benevolent attitude from very high functionaries of the state.

In tandem, large numbers of foreign militants have infiltrated Kashmir in 2015 and 2016 —  a hundred during the first ten months of this year, according to Hooda.

A nuanced view

Unlike many of the military men who held control of state power during the 1990s, the erudite Hooda is keenly aware of the distinctions between different sorts of militants, and variations in the ideologies of those active on the ground.

He points out astutely that “the more (a) local is killed, (the more) you will have a reaction”. However, asked if this summer’s unrest might have been avoided if the widely popular Burhan had not been killed, Hooda replied: “We were not aware that Burhan specifically was there. But even if we had known, would we have done it differently?”

He alludes to the fact that the Indian Army cannot by itself make a distinction between one militant and another. He is, however, acutely aware of the need for political initiatives. “Everything cannot be fought kinetically,” he says.

Clearly, much needs to be done — on various levels, and through several channels. Such initiatives are very urgently required in light of the various prognoses that another summer of unrest is in the offing.

First Published On : Nov 24, 2016 12:21 IST

Not scared of CBI probe: Bhupinder Singh Hooda

Sun, 25 Sep 2016-10:23pm , Jind (Har) , PTI
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Former Haryana CM Bhupinder Singh Hooda on Sunday said he is not “scared” of CBI probe against him and will continue to raise the voice of the people.Addressing a rally at Karsola and Rajpura Bhain villages, Hooda said if gets the support from the public he can bring the state government “to its knees.” “I came here for ‘Mann ki Baat.’ Tell me whether I committed any mistake during my Chief Ministership? If not then support me,” he said. “I am ready to take on this anti-people BJP with your support,” Hooda said.He said during the Congress rule Haryana was the number one state in terms of development but in the two years of the BJP rule, it has come down to No 16. He alleged that INLD (Indian National Lok Dal)along with BJP is conspiring against him. “Even some of the former Congress leaders who are now with BJP are conspiring against me, I am not scared,” he said.

Panchkula land allotment scam: Crucial file relating to case goes ‘missing’

New Delhi: The CBI on Monday claimed to have recovered Rs 85 lakh cash from alleged beneficiaries of HUDA land allotment scam in which industrial plots in Haryana were purportedly given away at throwaway prices even as a crucial file related to the allotment process is “missing”.

The agency has registered a case for alleged irregularities in allocation of industrial plots at Panchkula when the then Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda was the chairman of Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA), a move dubbed by him as

CBI has registered a case for alleged irregularities in allocation of industrial plots at Panchkula when the then Haryana CM Bhupinder Hooda was the chairman of HUDA. News 18

CBI sources here said during searches on 21 May, the agency had recovered Rs 85 lakh from the premises of Panchkula residents Anupam Sood and Sachin Sood, while Rs 6.25 lakh were recovered from Mona Devi and Rs eight lakh from Nandita Hooda, all believed to be beneficiaries of plot allotments.

They said the agency has included an IPC section related to destruction of evidence.

Haryana Police is also looking for the file which carried details of allotment process through a separate FIR.

The agency has registered a case for alleged irregularities in allocation of industrial plots at Panchkula when the then Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda was the chairman of Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA), a move dubbed by him as “personal vendetta”.

Explaining the case, CBI sources said in one instance 2000 sqm of industrial plot was given at meagre Rs 60 lakh which was much lower than the market rate.

The case which was handed over from Vigilance Bureau of Haryana to CBI has named “the then Chairman of HUDA”, three former bureaucrats, 13 beneficiaries and unknown officials of the authority and state government.

The chief minister is the chairman of HUDA.

After registering the case on 16 May, CBI carried out searches at 16 locations including Chandigarh, Panchkula, Faridabad, Delhi, Gurgaon, Karnal, Kurukshetra and Rohtak against the former bureaucrats and beneficiaries who are alleged to have used their “links” in getting industrial plots at Panchkula.

According to the FIR, industrial plots were given to 14 people by allegedly manipulating certain provisions of allotment which included allowing them to submit their applications even after the last date of submission ended.

The 14 people who had been alloted lands had submitted their applications on 24 January, 2012 whereas the last date of submission was 6 January, 2012, the FIR alleged.

The former chief minister, while reacting to the CBI move, termed it as “personal vendetta” and alleged that these cases were only “diversionary tactics” being adopted by BJP-led government in the state.

“They have not been able to fulfil any of the promises made so far. So they are diverting the people’s attention through such cases which is purely witch-hunting,” he claimed.

Panchkula land allotment scam: CBI lodges case against ex-Haryana CM Hooda

New Delhi: In trouble for former Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, CBI has registered a case for alleged irregularities in allocation of industrial plots at Panchkula when he was the chairman of Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA), a move dubbed by him as “personal vendetta”.

The case which was handed over from Vigilance Bureau of Haryana to the CBI has named “the then Chairman of HUDA”, three former bureaucrats, 13 beneficiaries and unknown officials of the authority and state government.

Bhupinder Singh Hooda, while reacting to the CBI move, termed it as

Bhupinder Singh Hooda, while reacting to the CBI move, termed it as “personal vendetta” and alleged that these cases were only “diversionary tactics” being adopted by BJP-led government in the state. CNN News 18

The former chief minister is the chairman of HUDA.

After registering the case on 16 May, CBI carried out searches at 16 locations including Chandigarh, Panchkula, Faridabad, Delhi, Gurgaon, Karnal, Kurukshetra and Rohtak against the former bureaucrats and beneficiaries who are alleged to have used their “links” in getting industrial plots at Panchkula.

According to the FIR, industrial plots were given to 14 people by allegedly manipulating certain provisions of allotment which included allowing them to submit their applications even after the last date of submission ended.

The 14 people who had been alloted lands had submitted their applications on January 24, 2012 whereas the last date of submission was 6 January, 2012, the FIR alleged.

The former Chief Minister, while reacting to the CBI move, termed it as “personal vendetta” and alleged that these cases were only “diversionary tactics” being adopted by BJP-led government in the state.

“They have not been able to fulfil any of the promises made so far. So they are diverting the people’s attention through such cases which is purely witch-hunting.

“The state government could have waited for the order of Punjab and Haryana High Court where the matter is already pending,” he said.

Besides Chairman of HUDA, others named in the FIR are retired IAS officer DPS Nagal, the then Chief Administrator of HUDA, SC Kansal, the then Controller of Finance and B B Taneja, the then Deputy Superintendent of HUDA.

Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar had ordered that the State Vigilance Bureau register an FIR in the Panchkula plot case after which the matter is now set to be referred to the CBI.

The FIR also alleged that ineligible beneficiaries were alloted plots at rates lesser than the prevailing market rates, causing financial loss to the tune of several crores of rupees to the state exchequer.

It is alleged that the 14 plots, ranging from 496 square metre to 1,280 square metre, were allegedly allotted at throwaway prices after changes were made midway in the eligibility criteria.

Those allotted the industrial plots included Renu Hooda, Manjot Kaur, Nandita Hooda, Mona Beri, Pardeep Kumar, KPS Sandhu, Dagar Katyal, Ganesh Dutt Ratan, Aman Gupta, Lt Col OP Dahiya (retd), Sidharth Bhardwaj, Ashok Verma, Anupam Sood and Sachin Sood.

It is alleged that all of them were related to politicians, bureaucrats and other influential people which included the then Chief Minister of the state.

The case has been registered under various sections of IPC and Prevention of Corruption Act.

Hooda’s land largesse for pvt builder ‘clear fraud’, SC restores it to HUDA

A landmark Supreme Court judgement has given huge relief to  farmers/landowners, while quashing the “illegal” and “deceptive” licensing of 280 acres of land in Rohtak, Haryana in 2006 to Uddar Gaggan Properties Ltd.

This serves as a body blow to former Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda and other state officials who are facing multiple probes for facilitating the private enrichment of builders through similar illegal licencing.

“The unholy nexus to promote the private interests” of builders by “transfer of resources of poor for the benefit of the rich”, through “gross abuse of law” and “clear fraud” referred to in the judgement, has been detailed in a series of media exposes, beginning October 8, 2012, first about the irregularities in property dealings involving real estate major DLF and Congress President Sonia Gandhi’s son Robert Vadra, while later going on to uncover Hooda’s modus operandi to favor a host of other builders, including Uddar Gaggan.

Hooda’s modus operandi

This earlier expose had revealed that Hooda was acquiring land from poor, illiterate  farmers at a low rate in the name of ‘public interest’ only to later license this to builders after bestowing out-of-turn favors that helped the land value increase exponentially.

The facts disclosed therein, had pointed to Hooda’s motivation in licensing a staggering 24,825 acres of land during his 10-year tenure as Chief Minister, as against just 8,550.32 acres by successive Chief Ministers in the 23 years preceding Mr. Hooda’s rise to power in 2004.

Former CM Bhupinder Hooda. AFPFormer CM Bhupinder Hooda. AFP

Former Haryana CM Bhupinder Hooda. AFP

Under the Land Acquisition Act 1894, the Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) and Haryana State Industrial Development Corporation (HSIDC) have powers to acquire land under Section 4 & 6 through the issuance of notifications, while the award of licence is announced under Section 9.

Builders who are unable to coerce farmers to sell their land turn to the government for official assistance. On cue, using Section 4, the State intimates landowners that the government requires those specific parcels of land for ‘public purpose’. At this stage, builders enter into agreements to sell/collaborate with landowners/farmers, offering them a modest premium over the government’s prevailing compensation rate.

If landowners/farmers offer resistance, Section 6 is imposed, declaring the State’s intention to acquire land. This forces even resistant landowners to enter into agreements. Between the imposition of Sections 4, 6 & 9, and even after award, as in this case, builders apply for licences in collaboration with farmers/landowners to the Town and Country Planning (TCP), Haryana. Once the land is released from acquisition, its value — for those chosen builders — soars dramatically.

The Uddar Gaggan case

Reflecting the larger modus operandi, in this particular case, too, HUDA first staked its claim to acquire 850.88 acres of land in Sector 27-28, Rohtak vide a notification of April 11, 2002, for residential/commercial purpose. However, the final notification of April 8, 2003 under Section 6 of the land Acquisition Act was in respect of 441.11 acres.

On March 21, 2005, Uddar Gaggan submitted its applications to TCP, Haryana for licenses to develop a colony across 280 acres.

The award of land for 422.44 acres took place on April 6, 2005 and Uddar Gaggan’s licences were granted on June 12, 2006 after releasing the apportioned land, “free from all encumbrances”, from acquisition in the guise of “public purpose”. The licences were addressed to the landowners but remitted to the builder and followed by execution of sale deeds in favor of the builder by using power of attorney of landowners.

“Power of land acquisition vested under the 1894 Act could be invoked only in public interest and not for creating a land bank in favor of Uddar Gaggan through distress sales. The State cannot force the landowners to surrender their title in favor of and at a price to be dictated by a private beneficiary,” the judgement reads, while adding that “the notified public purpose was only a ruse to enable Uddar Gaggan to purchase the land at the lowest possible price for maximizing the profiteering”.

The SC judgement takes cognizance of the fact that “the builder did not own an inch of land, yet every licence was addressed to it and sent with a specific enclosure that Uddar Gaggan was the sole owner of the licensed and released land. The issuance of license, in our considered view, was a fraud played on the policy behind the 1975 Act”.

“Here is a case where artificial reasons were created, the records were fudged with the aid of the Deputy Commissioner, Rohtak, to mislead the fact that the possession of acquired land was not taken while announcing the Award. The responsible officers of the State Government, in their anxiety to help out Uddar Gaggan, have completely overlooked the interest of landowners or of the General Public to whom thousands of plots could have been allotted at a fairly low price through the aegis of HUDA”.

This “amounts to transfer of resources of poor for the benefit of the rich. It amounts to permitting profiteering at the cost of livelihood and existence of a farmer. This is against the philosophy of the Constitution and in violation of guaranteed fundamental rights of equality and right to property and to life. What cannot be done directly cannot be done indirectly also”.

SC strikes a body blow to corrupt builders

“Undoing of such illegal actions would clearly be in the interests of justice. The wrong has to be remedied”.

Therefore, now, by virtue of this judgement, “all licences granted in respect of the land covered by acquisition stand transferred to HUDA”, “free from all encumbrances”, while “all release orders” and “sale deeds/other agreements in favor of the builder” as well as “creation of any third party rights by the builder”, stand quashed.

The SC has additionally ordered that the sale consideration paid by Uddar Gaggan to the land owners be treated as compensation. This means land owners will not be required to refund any amount, while those who did not receive any compensation, will now do so. “Land owners will also be at liberty to prefer reference under Section 18 of the 1894 Act within a period of three months, if such reference has not been earlier preferred”.

The builder will “be entitled to refund/reimburse any payments made to the State, land owners or on development of the land, from HUDA on being satisfied about the extent of actual expenditure not exceeding HUDA norms on the subject”. The “claim of the builder will only be taken up after settling claim of third parties from whom the builder has collected money. No interest will be payable on the said amount”.

“The third parties from whom money has been collected by the builder, upon verification of their claims, will be entitled to either the refund of the amount, (out of and to the extent of the amount payable to the builder under the above direction, available with the State), or will be allotted plots at the price paid or price prevalent, whichever is higher. No interest will be payable on the said amount”.

The State has also been directed to give the “benefit of “Rehabilitation and Resettlement of Land Acquisition Oustees” policy of the State/HUDA to land owners, by reserving the required area from the acquired land itself”.

While allowing a year for compliance of its judgement, the SC had laid down a strict schedule: a quarterly progress report of the action taken to be filed by the State in this Court and “final report of compliance to be filed within one month after expiry of one year from today for such further direction as may become necessary”.

Hooda and his men in the dock

The SC has further directed the State government to “enquire into the legality and bona fides of the action of the persons responsible for illegally entertaining the applications of the builder and releasing the land to it, when it had no title to the land on the date of the notification under Section 4 of the 1894 Act” and to “proceed against them in accordance with law”.

According to government records, available with The Firstpost, roughly 244 acres has been released for grant of CLU/Licence after Section 4, around 2,471acres released after Section 6 and 930 acres of land released after award under Land Acquisition Act, 1894. This takes the total land licensed in this manner between 2004 to 2015 to a staggering 3,646 acres (See chart).

CLU-graphCLU-graph

This “fraudulent and clandestine exercise of power by the State is not permitted by law”. The fact that the award of this 3,645.6655 acres is also “in violation of Public Trust Doctrine”, means big trouble for Hooda, his accomplices and other beneficiaries.

Hooda is already under probe by the Justice SN Dhingra Commission for his role in the illegal grants of licences to hundreds of private companies, including the Robert Vadra case, involving his company Skylight Hospitality and DLF.

A CBI enquiry into 14 other plots allotted in violation of due process by Hooda is already ongoing on the reference of the state government.

Earlier this month, the Haryana state government filed a First Information Report (FIR) for the illegal allotment of prime land in Panchkula, estimated to be worth roughly Rs 100 crore, to the Associated Journals Ltd (AJL). AJL is the parent company of National Herald, the now defunct mouthpiece of the Congress Party.

The move followed a Firstpost exposé of 29 December 2015 detailing the file movement that showed how former chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda overturned legal and official advice from within his government to first illegally re-allott the plot, then condone delays and defaults, even going so far as to extend additional unwarranted and unprecedented favors, including “camouflage aid to the firm”.

Hooda has been daring the government to initiate inquiries to establish allegations of wrongdoing. Now that these inquiries are on full swing, both he and the Congress party have started accusing the BJP governments at the centre and in Haryana of pursuing “vendetta” politics.

BJP pats Khattar govt for ‘controlling’ Jat stir within three days

Notwithstanding the opposition’s criticism, BJP General Secretary Anil Jain on Tuesday praised the Manohar Lal Khattar government for the “big achievement” of bringing under control widespread violence during the Jat quota stir within three days.Asked if the government was able to take timely steps to control the situation, Jain claimed, “The government performed its duty. It summoned Central forces on time and a conspiracy to create divisions in the state police force was blunted.”<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Jain, in-charge of the party’s Haryana affairs, said, “The violence started on February 19 and by February 22, it was brought under control.”The Haryana government has set up a committee under retired IPS officer Prakash Singh to inquire into the acts of “omission and commission” on part of civil and police officers during the Jat quota agitation.Thirty lives were lost during the protests. Large scale damage to property, both government and private, was caused, especially in Rohtak, Jhajjar and Sonipat which formed the epicentre of the stir.When asked who is responsible for the lives lost during the stir, Jain, who held a meeting with Haryana ministers and BJP MLAs to assess the performance and seek feedback of the government’s functioning, said, “Those who pushed the state into violence and hatched a conspiracy.””It all started from one place, one region. Never before, this kind of a conspiracy was hatched. Everyone knows, whose stronghold Rohtak, Jhajjar and Sonipat are and whose advisors have been caught. Things have been exposed before the people, how a peaceful state was put on the boil and you can yourself draw the conclusion who is responsible for the lives lost,” Jain said, apparently referring to former chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda.Jain hit out at former Haryana Chief Minister Hooda, who has accused the BJP-led government in the state of following a policy of ‘badla’ (revenge) and has also charged the main opposition, INLD, of being “hand in glove” with the Khattar government for registration of a case in connection with the re-allotment of a plot to a firm in Panchkula in 2005.The BJP leader said that if the need is felt, the case would be handed over to the CBI. To another question, he said, it is not just Hooda, “anyone who has done wrong, will be punished as per law.” He took a dig at Hooda, saying when he was the chief minister of Haryana for 10 years, what stopped him from initiating a probe into the allotment of land to Devi Lal Trust in Chandigarh.”It is not the question of A or B. Our government will probe any wrongdoing. But, we want to ask Hooda, what stopped him from conducting a probe all these years when he was the CM,” Jain said.The Haryana State Vigilance Bureau has registered a case of cheating and corruption against the then Chairman of HUDA, a post held by Hooda, and four ex-HUDA officials for allegedly re-alloting a plot to the firm in Panchkula.Hooda had alleged that the BJP government had registered the case against him after Leader of Opposition in the Haryana Assembly (Abhay Singh Chautala) wrote a letter in this regard.

Handwara incident highly regrettable, says Northern Army commander

Srinagar: Terming the Handwara incident as “highly regrettable”, Northern Army Commander Lt General DS Hooda, who visited the area on Tuesday, favoured early completion of probe into the killing of three persons after security personnel opened fired during a violent protest on Tuesday.

Northern Army Commander Lt Gen DS Hooda. AFPNorthern Army Commander Lt Gen DS Hooda. AFP

Northern Army Commander Lt Gen DS Hooda. AFP

“The Army has offered to take care of the expenses for hospital care and subsequent rehabilitation of those injured
in the incident,” defence spokesman Lt Colonel NN Joshi said in Srinagar.

“The Northern Army Commander Lt Gen D S Hooda accompanied by Chinar Corps Commander Lt Gen Satish Dua today visited the Handwara area and interacted with officers and soldiers regarding the incident in which three civilians were killed when protesters tried to storm an Army post,” Joshi said.

The General Officer Commanding in Chief of Army’s Northern Command termed the incident as “highly regrettable” and asked for an early completion of the inquiry which has been already ordered, the spokesman said.

Army had on Tuesday ordered an inquiry into the incident while police said a magisterial probe and a departmental
inquiry are being conducted.

A junior police officer was today suspended for “mishandling” the law and order situation.

“Assistant Sub-Inspector Rafiq Ahmad has been suspended pending inquiries into yesterday’s incident,” a senior police official said on Monday.

PTI

Watch | Handwara firing: Kashmiri girl denies soldier molested her, claims local youth harassed her

A Kashmiri girl who was reportedly molested by a soldier has denied the incident ever happened and has alleged that local boys harassed her and began the riots that led to the death of two young men when the army fired on protesters in Handwara on Tuesday, the Times of India reported. She was quoted saying in a video: “I went to the (public) washroom and handed my bag to a friend. When I came back, a Kashmiri student heckled me and snatched my bag. The boy in school uniform slapped me and asked ‘if there were no boys in the valley’ (angrily insinuating that the girl was in a relationship with a soldier). I was shocked and confused about what he had said. Suddenly, several boys gathered. The boy asked me to go to the police station with him. There was a police uncle nearby. I told the boy to return my bag so that I could go to police station with the cop. He said he would not return my bag and started abusing me.”<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”There was no soldier there (near or in the washroom). I saw Hilal (an acquaintance). He slapped me and asked me what I was doing there. I asked him how he too could accuse me of any such thing (allegation of an illicit relationship) knowing me and our family. He too started abusing. It seemed that they had conspired in advance. The boy instigated all other boys too to create trouble,” the girls says in the video.Defence spokesman Col Manish Kumar said the the girl’s revelations exposed the malicious intent of perpetrators.Terming the Handwara incident as “highly regrettable”, Northern Army Commander Lt General D S Hooda, who visited the area , favoured early completion of probe into the killing of three persons after security personnel opened fired during a violent protest. “The Army has offered to take care of the expenses for hospital care and subsequent rehabilitation of those injured in the incident,” defence spokesman Lt Colonel N N Joshi said here.”The Northern Army Commander Lt Gen D S Hooda accompanied by Chinar Corps Commander Lt Gen Satish Dua today visited the Handwara area and interacted with officers and soldiers regarding the incident in which three civilians were killed when protesters tried to storm an Army post,” Joshi said. The General Officer Commanding in Chief of Army’s Northern Command termed the incident as “highly regrettable” and asked for an early completion of the inquiry which has been already ordered, the spokesman said. Army had yesterday ordered an inquiry into the incident while police said a magisterial probe and a departmental inquiry are being conducted.Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Wednesday sought from Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar a “time-bound inquiry” into the Handwara firing, which left a budding cricketer and two others dead. Mehbooba, who is on her maiden visit here after assuming post of Chief Minister, today met Parrikar and Union Minister for Urban Development Venkaiah Naidu separately.In her meeting with Parrikar, she sought a time bound probe saying it will will act as a deterrent against such incidents in future. Describing the firing incident as “very unfortunate”, the Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister said, “I spoke to the Defence Minister. He assured me that a probe will be initiated and the culprits will be punished. “At the same time the family (of the victims) will be compensated. Such incidents should not happen in the future,” she said after meeting Parrikar.With agency inputs

Jammu and Kashmir: Army orders probe into killing of 2 youths in Handwara firing

Army on Tuesday ordered inquiry into the killing of two youths in Handwara in North Kashmir during alleged firing by army men as Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti said such incidents have a “negative impact” on the state government’s efforts to consolidate peace efforts.The decision of holding an inquiry was conveyed by Lt Gen D S Hooda, heading the strategic Udhampur-based Northern Command, to the Chief Minister who had called him to ascertain the situation on the ground. Expressing grief over the incident, Mehbooba, who is here on her maiden visit after taking over the reins of the state, called Lt Gen Hooda who informed her that the Army has already ordered an inquiry into the incident and that tangible action will be taken once the probe is completed, an official statement said. <!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Mehbooba said that security personnel involved in the killing of two youths in Handwara will be handed exemplary punishment, saying such incidents “cannot” be tolerated. The Army officer informed that he would look into the demand of the locals in Handwara area for shifting of a bunker.
ALSO READ Watch: 2 youths killed in alleged army firing in Handwara in Jammu and KashmirThe Chief Minister said such tragic incidents have a huge negative impact on the efforts of the government and the political leadership aimed at consolidating the peace efforts in the State. She said the security forces must exercise maximum restraint and adhere to the Standing Operating Procedure (SOP) while dealing with the public protests as incidents of innocent killings cannot be tolerated. The Chief Minister has expressed solidarity with the families of the two youth. According to Jammu and Kashmir police, an alleged incident of “misbehaviour/molestation” by an army man took place in Handwara town. “Within minutes public in large numbers gathered there and attacked the army bunker in Handwara chowk. They assaulted the personnel deployed there, ransacked the bunker and attempted to set fire to the bunker,” a police spokesman said.In retaliation the security forces deployed used force to disperse the violent rampaging mob and in the process two individuals namely Mohammad Iqbal and Nayeem Qadir Bhat were killed. A criminal case has been registered in Police Station Handwara and investigation launched to ascertain the facts, the spokesman said.

Robert Vadra land case: My summoning is politically motivated, cries Bhoopinder Singh Hooda

Maintaining that nothing wrong was done during his tenure as the chief minister of Haryana, Bhupinder Singh Hooda on Thursday said his summoning by the Justice S N Dhingra commission of inquiry in connection with the Robert Vadra land deal case is politically motivated.”I will go on 25th, there was nothing wrong done during my tenure, we will tell that (to the commission)…just because someone is a relative of a big political leader, they want to politicise it,” Hooda told ANI.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>When asked if the entire episode was politically motivated, he said, “Obviously, there is no doubt in it. Everyone knows who the target is.”Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Subramanian Swamy had earlier welcomed the Justice SN Dhingra Commission’s move to summon Hooda and maintained that the former Haryana chief minister has behaved like a ‘servant’ of the son-in-law of Congress president Sonia Gandhi.The Justice S N Dhingra Commission of Inquiry has asked Hooda to appear before it in fourth week of March and record his statements regarding the allotment of land to the Vadra promoted Skylight Hospitality company.The Justice Dhingra Commission was setup in 2015 to probe the grant of commercial licence of land to hundreds of private companies, including Skylight Hospitality and DLF.Last month, the commission had reportedly summoned Haryana Chief Secretary Deepinder Singh Dhesi and officials of several private firms for recording of statements.

Jat quota row: 72-hour ultimatum ends today; Haryana seeks paramilitary forces

As the 72-hour deadline given by various Jat organisations to the BJP led Haryana government is set to end on Thursday, state government has sought paramilitary forces from the Centre to be deployed in sensitive areas.”Paramilitary force has been demanded (through state Home department) from the Centre and we will get the same,” IGP, Rohtak Range, Sanjay Kumar said.He said additional police forces also been arranged from within the state. “We have made adequate police security arrangements. We have adequate force and we are deploying it accordingly,” he said.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Jat leaders had on Monday threatened to resume their quota agitation, which rocked the state last month and claimed 30 lives, if the Manohar Lal Khattar government does not meet their demand by March 17. The influential Jat community leaders are demanding 10% quotas, besides withdrawal of FIRs registered against the protesters, compensation to those killed during the stir and action against BJP MP from Kurukshetra Raj Kumar Saini for his anti-Jat reservation stand. The Jat quota Bill is likely to be tabled in the Haryana Assembly today, keeping in view the deadline set by agitating Jats to meet their reservation demand, official sources said even as there was no official confirmation. BJP has accused Congress leader and former chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda of fanning the agitation. Hooda’s former political adviser Virender has been booked under several charges, including sedition, in connection with the violence.
ALSO READ Jat agitations: Media reports indicate massive gangrape near national highway may have occurred Colleges in Rohtak district of Haryana will remain closed from today following their request as it would enable students to have extended holidays. The colleges were otherwise slated to remain closed from March 20 to 27. Haryana police was criticised for its “failure” to prevent and control violence during the Jat agitation last month, in which 30 people lost their life. The then IGP Rohtak Shrikant Jadhav was suspended by Haryana government. Several districts including Rohtak, the epicentre of Jat agitation, Jhajjar, Kaithal, Jind, Sonipat, Bhiwani had witnessed violence by arsonists and unruly mob.With inputs from PTI

Jat quota riots: Ex-Hooda aide Virender booked for sedition; here’s what the FIR says

New Delhi: The Haryana Police has registered an F.I.R. (No. 0101) in Rohtak Civil Lines Police Station against former Haryana Chief Minister BS Hooda’s key accomplice and former political advisor, Professor Virender and others for sedition under IPC Sections 109, 120B, 124A, 153A, 153B, 427 and Section 3 of the Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act 1984.

The move follows an expose first on Twitter on 20 February, 2016, and through a Firstpost article a day later pointing to Hooda’s role in inciting loot, arson and settling of personal scores in Haryana in the guise of a Jat reservation agitation.

Jat quota riots have so far claimed 19 lives. PTIJat quota riots have so far claimed 19 lives. PTI

Jat quota riots have so far claimed 19 lives. PTI

The F.I.R is based on a complaint filed on Wednesday by Capt. Pawan Kumar Anchal and the occurrence of offense has been listed as 14.2.2016 to 21.2.2016.

Capt. Anchal had asked for a case to be registered against Prof Virender and others for “abetting and hatching a criminal conspiracy of seditious activities leading to large-scale destruction, arson, looting and vandalizing of public and private property, as well as loss of money and innocent lives.”

According to the F.I.R, a copy of which is with Firstpost, from 12 February “an unlawful assembly in the name of demand of reservation to Jat community was started by a section of Jat community at Mayyar (Hisar)” by blocking of a railway track.

Two days later, “another unlawful assembly was started at Sampla Rohtak by blocking national highway connecting Rohtak to Delhi. After this, the unlawful agitation spread to Jhajhar, Sonipat, Bhiwani, Jind, Hisar, Fatehbad, Panipat, Kaithal, Palwal, Gurgaon, Faridabad and other districts of Haryana. Roads and railways tracks at many places were blocked by agitators and protestors”.

“These protests were being run and organized mostly by nears and dears and close party leaders and workers of Sh. Bhupender Singh Hooda, Ex Chief Minister of Haryana. On 18.2.16, violence erupted in Rohtak city which continued on 19, 20, 21.2.16 during which more than 500 shops, petrol pumps, schools, shopping malls, car show rooms, banks and houses of the public have been looted by agitators, vandalized and set on fire in an organized manner”, reads the F.I.R.

“Such type of looting, vandalism and arson was done in other cities of Haryana also. Due to large-scale arson, looting and vandalism the state of Haryana was forced to call paramilitary forces and the Army for controlling the law and order situation in the state”, it reads.

“During arson many persons were injured by the protestors and even killing of person were done in Rohtak. Public and private properties were damaged. During controlling the situation of law and order many protestors of Jat community have also been killed in police and military action in Rohtak and other parts of the state.”

“As per reports published in media, public and private property worth more than Rs 20,000 crore has been vandalized in Rohtak and parts of the state under the influence of high profile politicians”, says the F.I.R.

“Even the Munak Canal supplying water to Delhi was damaged and taken over by protestors/miscreants. Intensity, spread and force of unlawful movement was so strong and organized that even government machinery failed in all manner to save public property in Rohtak city and parts of Rohtak district and Haryana military also had a tough time controlling these miscreants claiming to be protestors of the Jat reservation movement”, it reads.

Audio evidence

The FIR further quotes the contents of the audio clip that surfaced on 21 February. In the clip, the Professor is heard provoking Captain Man Singh Dalal (Retd) to stir up trouble in Sirsa, while commending the ‘work’ achieved in the Deshwal belt which comprises parts of Rohtak, Jind and Sonepat.

Professor Virender, who had earlier admitted on a local Haryana news channel that it is his voice in the tape, later stated that his words were twisted out of context. He has also claimed that the ‘Captain’ he was speaking to was a random caller and he does not know his name.

Unfortunately for him, Captain Maan Singh, president of the Dalal Khap Chaurasi, admitted that he had been conversing with Prof Virender in the clip.

Widespread destruction

Rohtak, Hooda’s political constituency and hometown, faced the worst of the mob arson and plunder. About 33 army columns in 9 districts of Haryana were deployed with maximum deployment in Rohtak. Additional columns are on standby.

The violence on display in the ongoing agitation has taken 19 lives so far while injuring another 183. Around 127 persons have been arrested and 535 cases have been registered. There has been widespread damage to public and private property with torching of homes, schools, offices, shops and public and private transport.

Around 1,337 trains in the northern states were impacted and 527 trains were cancelled, besides serious damage inflicted on rail property. The overall damage is estimated at over Rs 34,000 crore. Curfew has been imposed in Rohtak, Bhiwani, Jhajjar and Hisar.

According to the FIR, “innocent citizens have been killed due to criminal conspiracy and acts of Prof Virender and others”.

The Congress was also forced to admit to its role in the violent twist to Jat quota stir in Haryana from 20 February. It issued a show cause notice to Prof Virender on 23 February.

In so doing, Congress made clear its intent to deflect political fire from his boss Hooda despite the fact that it is abundantly clear that Virender could not have acted alone. This is also reflected in the F.I.R.

Hooda’s attempt to hold BJP-ruled Haryana to ransom comes at a time when he faces a CBI enquiry for the illegal allotment of a plot in Panchkula. His role in the allotment of a plot to National Herald is also under scrutiny, with an F.I.R. set to be lodged against him at any time.

The more dangerous long term social impact of this planned violence is the deliberate planting of a seed of enmity between Jats and non-Jats in Haryana. Interestingly, like Hooda, Rohtak is also Haryana Chief Minister ML Khattar’s hometown except that Hooda is a Jat and Khattar is not.

The politically sponsored violent quota stir is strategically timed to sabotage the state’s Happening Haryana Global Investors Summit in collaboration with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) which was scheduled to be held on 7-9 March, 2016. It has succeeded in achieving this objective by putting a burning, lawless Haryana in the global spotlight.

Jat agitation: Former Haryana CM Hooda asked to leave Rohtak

Former Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda was asked to leave Rohtak on Tuesday night, the town worst hit by Jat violence, by the district administration which cited maintenance of peace as the reason for the order.Hooda, a Congress leader, has been asked to leave Rohtak “to ensure peace and harmony,” official sources said. Hooda told PTI that he had received the order advising him to leave Rohtak and not stay here for the night by the district administration for maintenance of law and order.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”As a law abiding citizen I complied with the directions issued by the Principal Secretary A K Singh and left the town immediately,” he said, adding he was on his way to Delhi.Asked whether the administration could issue such a direction, he said it could do so keeping the law and order in mind. Hooda’s close aide and senior Congress leader B B Batra said two IPS officers first came to Hooda’s residence and verbally asked him to leave the town.”But Hooda declined saying he cannot leave on verbal instructions,” Batra said, adding the former Chief Minister sought an administrative order.Batra said that later an order was issued by Principal Secretary A K Singh, who has been appointed the Special Officers for Rohtak during the Jat agitation. He issued the order on ground of maintenance of law and order. The former Chief Minister immediately complied with the order and left for Delhi, Batra said.

Why Khattar was heckled in Rohtak: While Haryana was burning, CM was playing fiddle

Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar is lucky his police chief is not BS Bassi.

While delivering a speech in Rohtak on Tuesday, he was shouted down by an angry mob and forced to abandon it midway. Tempers ran so high that at some other place, under a police chief like Bassi and surrounded by black-coats and flag-wavers, the pracharak-turned-CM may have regretted his decision to step out of his chamber from which he watched most of the violence past week.

Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar. PTIHaryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar. PTI

Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar. PTI

Later, as he addressed the press from the safety of a government building, chants of murdabad and hai-hai provided the background score.

Khattar has earned some of the ridicule and hai-hai he is getting. Throughout the Jat agitation, and even before that, he acted like a rabbit caught in the glare of a headlight. In the end, even the BJP high command ran out of patience and confined him to the role of a spectator by asking Haryana MP Chaudhary Birendra Singh and UP Jat strongman Sanjeev Baliyan to negotiate with the protesters.

Character, it is often said, is not made in a crisis. It is revealed in it. With his inept handling of the situation, Khattar has proven that he may have the credentials for being an aadarsh pracharak, but anointing him the CM of Haryana was the BJP’s way of proving right Peter’s principle of every man rising to his level of incompetence.

And, Khattar himself is a prime example of that famous Bollywood song: Sab kuch luta kar hosh mein aaye to kya hua?

The demand for Jat reservation isn’t new. It has its genesis in the Atal Behari Vajpayee government’s decision to include Jats of Rajasthan in the central list of OBCs. Since then Jats of other states have also staked claim to quota benefits.

In December 2012, the Bhupendra Singh Hooda-led Congress government granted 10 per cent reservation to Jats. This was based on the report of Backward Classes Commission set up by Hooda. On the basis of the recommendations of the committee, Jats and four other castes, Jat Sikhs, Ror, Tyagi and Bishnoi, were included under Specially Backward Classes.

But this was set aside by the High Court since the SC had discarded the report of the commission. A review petition filed by the Khattar government is pending before the Supreme Court.

Since then, Jats had been threatening to start an agitation for their demand. But, Khattar ignored their threats and remained under the illusion that the crisis will blow over.

In the meantime, he allowed his Kurukshetra MP Raj Kumar Saini to start a caste Mahabharat. Saini made a series of inflammatory speeches, inciting Jats, promising retribution and calling them names. In an unverified video, he is heard calling the community members sons of a particular animal. But, Saini was asked to shut up only after the protest turned violent.

The agitation in Haryana began almost a week before it turned violent. After a modest beginning in Rohtak, by Sunday (February 14) it had spread to Sonepat, Jhajhar and Bhiwani. By then protesters had blocked many highways and roads, cutting off Haryana from Delhi. By Tuesday, Haryana had started running out of fuel, milk and other essential supplies.

But Khattar, who has spent more time protecting the cow and propagating the Gita, forgot its basic teachings: perform your karma. And, when the protests became violent, his government capitulated without a whimper by announcing that it will table a bill in the Assembly for 10 per cent reservation to Jats.

This begs the question: If Khattar had to ultimately surrender to blackmail and toe Hooda’s line, why did he throw in the towel after violence claimed 19 lives and protesters burnt down parts of Haryana into the stone age?

As an editorial in the Tribune points out, “What finally calmed the raging Jats was the acceptance of their demands in toto at the Delhi Durbar, even if the very feasibility of the OBC reservation is something no one can vouch for. If this is the kind of surrender the government had to accept, why was the state allowed to burn for two days and nights?”

The conduct of the Rohtak IG perhaps best defines the pusillanimity of the Haryana government. According to media reports, that when a protester died in retaliatory firing by the BSF, the Rohtak IG Srikant Jadhav, hid in his home, scared that the mob will now target him. As a result, a huge contingent of cops was deployed outside his home to protect the IG, instead of the city.

The irony of Khattar’s politics is that he is now falling between politics of non-Jats (that the BJP represented during elections) and appeasement of Jats (that the BJP has now come to represent).

With his own cabinet divided, non-Jats angry with his inability to protect them and Jats having tasted blood, Khattar looks more vulnerable than the cows he has devoted most of his tenure to protect.

And if the BJP doesn’t take a lenient view of his failure, he may be forced to do what he advises children to do: Read the Gita in retirement.

Audio clip controversy: Congress seeks explanation from Prof Virender

Congress on Monday night sought explanation from PCC delegate Prof Virender over an audio clip in which he is accused of talking to a Khap leader in order to allegedly incite violence amid the ongoing Jat agitation.Prof Virender, a close aide of former Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, said the voice in the clip was his, “but the conversation has been doctored”.”We have sought an explanation from him (Prof Virender),” Haryana Congress President Ashok Tanwar said. He said in the notice sent to Prof Virender by the party, a copy of the clip has been attached.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”We have sent the clip circulating in social media and allegations have been levelled that he has been instigating protests to start in other districts which were completely peaceful, that too seeking support from our rival party INLD,” Tanwar said over phone.”In the notice, we have mentioned that it is outright, irresponsible behaviour and not expected of him. Prof Virender has been asked to reply within three days, failing which the party will initiate disciplinary action against him,” he said.

#JatQuotaStir: His home spared, Bhupinder Hooda lucky to leave Rohtak in nick of time for Delhi peace rally

New Delhi: My suspicion of the Congress hand in the violent Jat quota stir in Haryana — which I expressed strongly on Twitter on Saturday evening, without any serious opposition or denials from the Congress, save a weak reply by MP from Rohtak, Deepender Hooda — received unexpected confirmation late on Sunday.

This was after an audio tape of former Haryana Chief Minister BS Hooda’s political advisor, Professor Virender, advising a captain (name unconfirmed but purportedly the spokesperson of the Dalal Khap Chaurasi) came into the public domain.

In the audio, the professor is heard asking the captain to stir up trouble in Sirsa, while commending the ‘work’ achieved in the Deshwal belt that comprises parts of Rohtak, Jind and Sonepat. Rohtak is Hooda’s political constituency and hometown.

File image of the Jat community protesting for reservation. PTI

File image of the Jat community protesting for reservation. PTI

The maximum carnage during the Jat stir was witnessed in Rohtak and Jhajjar areas, BS Hooda’s political strongholds.

The Congress and Khaps have been alleging that the Jat quota stir took a violent turn on 18 February, because the ruling BJP government in Haryana had taken too long to fulfill the promise of granting Jats the Other Backward Class (OBC) status that they seek. This is not the truth.

First, because the demand is an old one. The demand for reservation, first surfaced in Hooda’s tenure way back in 2010. Similar protests in March 2011, March 2012, December, 2012, September, 2013 and March 2014, remained largely confined to Mayyar in Hisar district. Unlike this time, Rohtak, in particular, remained peaceful through all these agitations.

After delaying the matter all through his tenure, the Congress-led UPA regime craftily announced reservation for Jats in the OBC category just a day before the announcement of the 2014 General Elections. However, the Supreme Court rejected the reservation, on three main grounds: The timing of the announcement; the fact that it was not accompanied by mandatory recommendation by National Commission of Backward Classes (NCBC); and lastly, shoddy survey data of the economic, educational and social status of the Jat community.

The violence that went viral in multiple videos, appeared to demonstrate a typical mindless mob mentality — indiscriminate violence, arson and loot of public and private property. But curiously, by Saturday, my sources pointed to a calculated pattern in the mob fury.

In Rohtak, where the quota fire was at its peak, with the maximum arson, loot and rioting all along a seven-kilometre stretch from the IG Police’s office to Quila Road, had BS Hooda’s house and properties untouched while neighbouring houses were torched. The BJP’s state finance minster, Captain Abhimanyu’s house was completely looted and burnt while his family, who were home when the mob attacked, had to flee to safety.

The same treatment was meted out to BJP MLA, Manish Grover.

Not finding these observations in the national media, I put out these tweets on 20th evening:

On Sunday morning, Hooda’s son, Deepender addressed this tweet to me:

I responded with the following tweets:

The professor has already accepted on a local Haryana news channel that it is his voice on the tape, which confirms the authenticity of the evidence. Official sources further confirm that the role of politically motivated individuals’ in triggering the violence is a matter of investigation.

After fuelling the fire, in which the quota issue was hijacked by looters and hooligans settling personal scores, BS Hooda chose to announce that he was going on a hunger strike to appeal for “peace and harmony”. This too, in Delhi. No attempts were made to rescue the fire in Haryana.

This motivated violence for cheap political gain has taken 12 lives while injuring around 80. There has been a huge loss to public and private property with the torching of homes, schools, offices, shops and public and private transport. It has hit rail services in the northern states, affecting around 1,000 trains with 736 trains cancelled and 105 diverted besides damage to rail property.

Manohar Lal Khattar’s govt caught on the backfoot with Jat stir: Here’s how Haryana can solve the issue

Haryana is on boil. Three lives have already been lost in the violence during the ongoing Jat stir in the state demanding reservation in jobs and educational institutions.

Properties worth crores have been damaged by the violent agitators. With protestors blocking rail tracks, Railways have suffered a loss of more than Rs 100 crores. While the opposition leaders are being blamed for stoking fires, some BJP leaders too are being accused of having initially backed the agitation.

Behind the reservation issue there is also a caste angle involved. For the last 20 years Jats were in power in Haryana and the Chief Minister used to be one from the Jat community. With BJP in power since late 2014, now there is a Punjabi CM and the Jats feel they have been sidelined from power.

On the other hand members of other backward classes (OBCs) are angry and perturbed that if Jats get reservation they are the ones who stand to lose as it will be their reservation quota which will be cut. So BJP’s MP Rajkumar Saini who belongs to the OBC category, has been issuing statements against reservation for Jats, adding fuel to fire.

There have been open and violent clashes between members of OBC and Jat community. Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar has tried unsuccessfully to sort out the issue peacefully by promising inclusion of Jats in economically backward persons (EPB) quota for general castes and increase in quota from 10 percent to 20 percent.

What is the whole issue about?

Army personnel patrol streets in Rohtak on Saturday. AFPArmy personnel patrol streets in Rohtak on Saturday. AFP

Army personnel patrol streets in Rohtak on Saturday. AFP

Jats have been demanding reservation in jobs and educational institutions in the state claiming their inclusion in the reservation category like several other castes. Ever since the Punjab and Haryana High Court stayed the decision of the Haryana government on July 27 2015 to grant 10 per cent reservation to Jats and four other castes-Jat Sikh, Ror, Tyagi and Bishnoi under the Special backward Caste category (SBC) the Jats had been planning agitation. Prior to the High Court decision, the Supreme Court had quashed the former Congress led UPA government’s decision on March 17, 2015 to provide reservation to Jats under other backward classes (OBC) category of the central government.

Was the government aware of the scale of violence and protest by the Jats?

The Manohar Lal Khattar government was clearly caught on the backfoot. The Jat leaders had been warning of protest for months altogether, but the government paid no heed. It had no idea the scale and intensity of the protest would be so high. In the last week of January 90 Khaps of Haryana came together and gave their consent for organizing blockades in the state from February 15. Sarv Jat Khap Panchayat Khap leaders even prepared a road-map for the agitation under which 50 locations had been identified where road and rail blockades would be organized, but the BJP government did not take the threat seriously. The result is for everyone to see now.

Was the state BJP divided over the reservation issue?

The Jat leaders of the state BJP supported the reservation for the communit, But the OBCs were strictly against it. MP Rajkumar Saini, who belongs to the OBC has been giving anti-reservation statements for the last one year. Clashes between Jats and the OBCs are occurring at several places in the state as a result. Khattar has disowned Rajkumar Saini’s statements. Show cause notice may be issued to him by the party.

Were Jats earlier included in the Centre’s OBC list?

Yes Jats had been included in the Centre’s OBC list thanks to the UPA goverment which made this move in the final year of its power in 2014. Earlier the National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC) had rejected demand to include Jats in the Centre’s OBC list, but the UPA government overruled it and gave reservation to the Jats in several states including Haryana, Himachal Praadesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and parts of Rajasthan with eye on the Jat’s vote bank.

Was the genesis of the present crisis sown by the state Congress in Haryana?

Taking a cue from the Congress led UPA government at the centre, Bhupinder Singh Hooda led Congress government in Haryana re-constituted the Haryana Backward Classes Commission (HBCC) to study the reservation demand of Jats as well as Jat Sikhs, Rors, Tyagis and Bishnois. What’s more the HBCC even recommended 10 per cent reservation for the five castes under the Special Backward Caste (SBC) category. Led by the Jat Chief Minister, the Haryana congress government lost no time in implementing the reservation for Jats which constitute 26 per cent of the total electorate and others.

Had the Congress government under Hooda exceeded the reservation quota limit in Haryana?

Yes, it exceeded the quota limit. The Haryana government provided 20 per cent reservation to the Scheduled Castes, 27 per cent reservation to the Backward Classes till December 2012. The Hooda government provided 10 per cent reservation to the SBC and 10 per cent reservation to the Economically backward persons (EBP) for general caste, thus taking the total reservation percentage in the state to 67 per cent, much above the 50 per cent limit set by the Supreme Court of India. Those who benefited under the EBP quota included Rajputs, Punjabis, Aggarwals and Brahmins.

What do the protesters want now?

The Jats are agitating for getting reservation back for them. Jats constitute 26 per cent of Haryana’s electorate. It is the single most powerful and politically influential community. Out of the total 90 assembly seats in Haryana, Jats and Jat Sikhs have incluence on about one third or 30 seats and no government can survive without their support. The ruling BJP is worried over the political fallout. Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar has announced to bring special BC quota Bill for Jats and four other castes in the forthcoming Budget session of the Assembly.

What is the way out?

Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar has set up a 4-member committee under the state Chief Secretary to prepare outline for future action on the reservation policy. The government has appealed to the agitators to withdraw stir but to no avail.

Experts say that government’s decision to bring the bill to declare Jats and four other castes as backward will not withstand judicial scrutiny because again the government will have to cross the 50 per cent quota limit which the courts will not allow. The government may however buy time and manage to control the agitating Jats meanwhile.

Siachen avalanche: One army jawan found alive under 25 feet of snow

An army jawan who was buried under 25 feet of snow following an avalanche in the Siachen glacier was on Monday miraculouly found alive in critical condition after six days of rescue efforts.”It was a miraculous rescue, all efforts are being made to evacute Lance Naik Hanaman Thappa to the RR hospital in the morning,” Lt Gen D S Hooda, Northern Army Commander, told PTI. He said, “Five bodies have been recovered so far and four bodies have been identified. All other soldiers are regrettably no more with us.”<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>He hoped that another miracle continues with Thappa, who hails form Karnataka. A Junior Commissioned Officer (JCO) and nine other ranks of Madras Regiment were buried after their post was hit by the avalanche at the altitude of 19,600 feet close to the Line of Control (LoC) with Pakistan where the temperature was minus 45 degrees Celsius.

‘Enough sources put in place’: India declines Pakistan’s offer for help in rescuing Army personnel from Siachen

New Delhi: Director General of Military Operations Lt Gen Ranbir Singh on Thursday declined his Pakistani counterpart’s offer for help in rescuing Indian soldiers buried under snow after an avalanche hit their post in Siachen Glacier, saying necessary resources have already been put in place.

Army sources said Pakistan’s DGMO Maj Gen Amir Riaz called up earlier in the day and offered help.

Representational image. PTIRepresentational image. PTI

Representational image. PTI

They said such calls are routine whenever any incident happens near the border.

“During the conversation, he offered Pakistani help which was declined for now saying that enough resources have been put in place,” the sources siad.

Incidentally, the offer of help came over 30 hours after the incident.

Ten soldiers of an army post, located at an altitude of 19,600 feet, were hit by a massive avalanche in the early hours yesterday.

Rescue operations by specialized teams of the army and the air force continued for the second day today amid fears that they may be dead.

“It is a tragic event and we salute the soldiers who braved all challenges to guard our frontiers and made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty,” Lt Gen DS Hooda, Army Commander, Northern Command, said.

Snow cutters and specialised equipment were flown into Leh to further boost the rescue efforts.

The glaciated area experiences temperatures ranging from a minimum of minus 42 degrees in the night to maximum of minus 25 degrees during the day.

Rescue teams are braving adverse weather and effects of rarified atmosphere to locate and rescue survivors.

“However, it is with deepest of regrets that we have to state that chances of finding any survivors are now very remote,” an Army statement had said.

PTI

Troops feared dead in Kashmir avalanche

The Indian army says there is little chance of finding alive any of the 10 soldiers missing after an avalanche struck the Siachen glacier in Kashmir.

Nitish Kumar criticises social media message about Nehru calling Netaji ‘war criminal’

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Thursday strongly criticised a message on social media regarding Jawaharlal Nehru allegedly calling Subhash Chandra Bose a “war criminal” and said this is “character assassination” of the national hero (Nehru).”These days a message is being run on social media in which Jawaharlal Nehru called Subhash Chandra Bose a war criminal. This is character assassination of the national hero,” he said, addressing a function to mark the death anniversary of freedom fighter Sheelbhadra Yaji at his native Bhakhtiyarpur.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Pandit Nehru’s contribution to the freedom movement and nation building cannot be forgotten,” the senior JD(U) leader said.Former Haryana Chief Minister Bhupendra Singh Hooda was also present at the function to mark death anniversary of Sheelbhadra Yaji.In an apparent attack against BJP, he said “Those ruling in Delhi at present had no role in the freedom movement.” Nitish said there were different streams in the struggle for country’s Independence. On the one hand was Mahatma Gandhi’s non-violent agitation while on the another side there were revolutionaries like Bose, Sardar Bhagat Singh and Khudiram Bose.Yaji was an associate of Netaji and had been called to Singapore by him to spread the message of freedom, Hooda said while paying respect to the freedom fighter.

© 2020 Yuva Sai Sagar. Theme by Anders Norén.