2016 Jat Stir: Haryana To Compensate “Innocent” Persons


Chandigarh: The Haryana Government on Saturday announced a fresh compensation, this time for “innocent persons”, who were injured during the 2016 Jat reservation stir.

The compensation announcement comes ahead of the proposed Balidan Divas to be observed in the state tomorrow in memory of those who lost their lives during last year’s agitation.

“While any person who had sustained a bullet injury will be paid Rs one lakh, those who suffered a fracture not due to any bullet injury will be paid Rs 50,000,” Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar announced here today.

An amount of Rs 25,000 will be given for those who sustained other minor injuries, he said. The compensation amount will be paid out of the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund and the Deputy Commissioners have been directed to immediately release the payment. The fresh round of Jat agitation in Haryana seeking reservation in education and government jobs among other demands entered its third week today.

The All-India Jat Aarakshan Sangarsh Samiti (AIJASS), the main body spearheading the fresh stir, has said that they will decide the course of the agitation tomorrow. “February 19 would be observed as ‘Balidan Divas’ at different places in the country in memory of those who lost their lives during last year’s agitation,” AIJASS President, Yashpal Malik said.

Besides seeking quota in education and government jobs under the Other Backward Classes (OBCs) category, the demands of the Jats include release of those jailed during last year’s agitation, withdrawal of cases slapped during the protest and government jobs for the kin of those killed and injured while taking part in the stir.

The main opposition party in Haryana, the INLD, has openly come out in support of the agitating Jats this time and asked the government to meet their demands while Congress too has asked the Khattar government to fulfill the promises made to the Jats after last year’s stir.

The BJP government in the state had last week formed a five-member committee, headed by Chief Secretary D S Dhesi, to hold talks with the agitating Jats. Recently, a meeting between representatives of a Haryana government-appointed committee and leaders of the Jat agitation remained inconclusive. In view of the fresh Jat stir, paramilitary forces have been deployed in sensitive areas, while the state police is maintaining a strict vigil. Haryana Police is also keeping vigil near statues of various state icons in sensitive districts to thwart any act of vandalism.

As many as 30 people were killed and property worth crores of rupees was damaged at many places in Haryana during last year’s Jat stir which had turned violent. Rohtak and some of its neighbouring districts, including Sonipat and Jhajjar, were the worst hit by the violence last year.

Haryana Government has earlier released a compensation of Rs 65.38 crore, including interim and final payments, to those people whose properties were damaged in the recent Jat quota stir in the state. Private and government insurance companies have already made payments over Rs 12 crore to these people whose insured properties were damaged, an official spokesperson said here.