Farmer sustains head injuries; party leaders, including a former Minister, held hostage inside a temple in Rohtak for several hours
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders faced the ire of farmers in Haryana in separate incidents on Friday. While farmers protesting against the agricultural laws broke the windscreen of the car of the party’s Rajya Sabha MP Ramchandra Jhangra in Hisar, 30-odd party leaders, including a former Minister, were held hostage inside a temple in Rohtak for several hours.
Mr. Jhangra was in Hisar’s Narnaund village to inaugurate a community hall to mark Vishwakarma day around noon when farmers gathered in large numbers, holding black flags to protest against his visit to the village. The protest turned violent when the mob broke the windscreen of Mr. Jhangra’s car. The police used mild force to disperse the crowd and detained two people on charges of rioting and unlawful assembly, said Nitika Gahlaut, Superintendent of Police, Hansi.
Kuldeep Satrod, 40, sustained head injuries in the incident. The agitating farmers claimed that he was attacked by the people accompanying the Minister, said Inderjit Singh, vice-president, All-India Kisan Sabha, Haryana, seeking a probe into the incident. The police, however, said the farmer had fallen down following a bout of epilepsy. Later, farmers sat on a dharna outside the local police station, demanding the withdrawal of the case. They also blocked traffic at a few points on the Jind-Hansi road.
In another incident, former Haryana Minister Manish Grover and several other BJP leaders were held hostage by protesting farmers in Rohtak during the day when they went to a temple at Kiloi village to watch the live telecast of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s programme in Kedarnath. Dozens of farmers surrounded the temple, preventing the leaders from leaving its premises, and also deflated the tyres of the leaders’ cars. Soon, farmers from neighbouring villages joined in.
The farmers demanded an apology from the leaders for entering the village, and sought an assurance that they would not visit any other village as well.
Soon senior officers from the local administration and police personnel reached the spot to facilitate the release of the leaders. The police force from the neighbouring districts of Jind, Sonipat and Jhajjar was also called in. “The locals had certain issues and previous concerns with Mr. Grover and wanted to talk to him,” said Udai Singh Meena, Superintendent of Police, Rohtak.