About 180 Gujjars nabbed in Rajasthan

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Jaipur, Jan 18: Ahead of the re-launch of the Gujjar agitation from January 21 to protest the non-inclusion of the community into the Schedule Tribe list, police have arrested about 180 Gujjar activists, including Gujjar Chetna Manch President Rajendra Vidhudi, to prevent the stir.

Mr Vidhudi and Gujjar leaders Bheru Lal Bhadana and Samay Singh were arrested from a hotel in Bhilwara yesterday. The arrest of other activists came from Bharatpur, Ajmer, Kota and Bhilwara among other places, the police said. The police also raided sitting MLA Attar Singh Bhadana's farm house near Bayana in Bharatpur district this morning. But, they could not arrest him.

BJP Treasurer and sitting MP Ramdas Agarwal, who is heading a four member-committee constituted by the state government for preparing economic package for the agitating Gujjar community, yesterday hinted that stern action would be taken against the agitating Gujjar leaders.

Mr Agarwal said the Rajasthan government had taken all possible steps to satisfy the Gujjar community. It had recommended to the Centre creation of a new special category for Nomadic castes to provide reservation to Gujjars, had forwarded the Centre Chopra Committe's report which had stressed on the amendment in norms for ST status to new castes. Besides, the government was also contemplating granting a special economic package to the community, he added.

''Therefore, the Gujjar outfits should now give up their plan to re-launch the agitation,'' Mr Agarwal said.

However, the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) state Secretariat has condemned the state government for resorting to ''hardships'' against the agitating leaders.


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