Army denies entering Dera HQ in Sirsa, Haryana
Indian Army has issued an official statement that Army columns have not entered Dera premises in Sirsa, as some media houses reported earlier.
The Army has not been given any order so far to enter the Dera Sacha Sauda headquarters, Sirsa sub-divisional magistrate (SDM) Paramjit Singh Chahal told PTI, even as the defiant followers of self-styled godman Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh stayed put at the campus.
"There is still no order for the Army to enter the campus. They are only ensuring enforcement of curfew in the area," Chahal said.
An estimated one lakh people, including women and children, are present in the sect headquarters.
However, the Army conducted a flag march in the campus. Rapid Action Force personnel and the police are accompanying the Army in this operation to evict Dera supporters.
Army and district authorities have been making announcements through loudspeakers, asking those inside to leave the premises.
In the wake of the verdict over 15,000 paramilitary forces were deployed. Intelligence suggested that the Dera followers would turn violent if there would be an adverse verdict against their chief.
The Punjab and Haryana High Court had ordered attaching of the property to recover the loss caused to the state as a result of Friday's violence. The attachment proceedings would begin as per the directive of the High Court.
Sources told PTI that Army was last night provided with the map of the sprawling dera campus, which is spread over nearly 1,000 acres and is a township on its own, with schools, sports village, hospital and cinema hall. Dera followers had arrived in droves and in Panchkula ahead of the CBI special court verdict against Ram Rahim.