Bharat Bandh against changes in SC/ST Act ‘largely peaceful’ in Rajasthan: Police

The bandh was called under the banner of Sarva Samaj to protest an amendment to the SC/ST Act that superseded Supreme Court verdict on March 20, diluting provisions of arrest in the law.

Updated: Sep 06, 2018 23:59:52

By HT Correspondents

Members of various general category and OBC organisations hold placards as part of the Bharat Bandh protest against the Parliament passing an amendment to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. (Himanshu Vyas\ HT Photo)

The call for ‘Bharat Bandh’ to protest against the changes made in the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act remained largely peaceful in the state, police said Thursday.

Special director general of police (Law and Order) NRK Reddy said no untoward incidents were reported from the state. At a few places, police used mild force to disperse people who were trying to create a disturbance. Reddy said a few arrests were made, including 35 in Jaipur and 20 in Jodhpur for disturbing peace.

The bandh was called under the banner of Sarva Samaj in the state to protest amendment to the SC/ST Act that superseded Supreme Court verdict on March 20, diluting provisions of arrest in the law.

Samta Andolan Samiti, which campaigns for major changes in caste-based reservation, had on Thursday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to cancel the SC/ST atrocity amendment in 2018 and implement the Supreme Court‘s ruling on March 20, 2018; the victim should be given compensation of Rs 10 to Rs 50 lakh till the case is dismissed; the financial assistance given to the person who files the case should be taken back with interest; creamy layer from SC/ST to be removed and caste based reservation in promotion should be stopped from April 1, 1997.

In Bharatpur, all shops, including pharmacies, remained closed. A majority of private schools remained closed while some of them were closed after 10 am the in district.

Bharatpur district collector Sandesh Nayak appointed sector magistrate across the district to maintain law and order situation while superintendent of police Kesar Singh Shekhawat deployed police force to oversee the situation.

Nearly 500 police personnel were deployed in the district, while 200 cops, a company of Rajasthan Armed Constabulary (RAC), 60 cops from police training centre were deployed in the city.

Similarly in Karauli, thousands of people gathered and took out a rally against political parties, saying that they have decided to opt for NOTA (None of the Above) in the upcoming elections.

In Dholpur, markets remained closed and protest rallies were carried out.

In Kota, private schools, coaching centres and shops remained shut. Petrol pumps were also kept closed for three hours.

In Nayapura area, bandh supporters had a brief argument with a petrol pump owner and forcibly closed a wine shop. Other districts of Hadauti region, including Baran, Bundi and Jhalawar, too, observed the bandh peacefully.

Bordering Barmer district and its Chohtan town also observed the bandh, said police.

However, the protest saw a mixed response in Barmer city where markets remained closed. But stores selling essential items, like medicines, remained open. Schools, colleges and petrol pumps, too, remained unaffected from the bandh.

Some villages in Barmer restricted the entry of politicians in their village and announced to opt for ‘NOTA’ in the upcoming elections.

Alwar observed a total bandh -- not a single shop was opened, attendance in government schools and colleges was low, while private schools declared a holiday, private buses were off the road. Later, a memorandum, demanding the withdrawal of the amendment to SC/ST act, was handed over to district collector Prakesh Rajpurohit.

In Jodhpur, except for shops in main markets, other stores remained open.

First Published: Sep 06, 2018 23:59:20


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