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Haryana

Posted at: Aug 26, 2017, 12:56 AM; last updated: Aug 26, 2017, 1:22 AM (IST)

In Sirsa, 4 killed, 6 hurt in police firing

Angry dera followers damage Vita milk plant & power substation, target men in khaki

200-vehicle cavalcade

  • The cavalcade comprised200 vehicles, eight of which were SUVs with tinted glasses
  • The cavalcade started from the dera headquarters at around 8.30 am
  • Alleging ‘injustice’, several followers tried to stop the cavalcade by lying in front of the vehicles

Sushil Manav

Tribune News Service

Sirsa, August 25

Four persons were killed and six others injured, four of them critically,  in Sirsa today in police firing at angry Dera Sacha Sauda followers who went on the rampage after the conviction of sect head Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh  in a rape case. One of the killed has been identified as Wazir Kamboj, a resident of Maujdeen village in Sirsa.

Three critically injured persons have been admitted to Maharaja Agarsen Medical College at Agroha in Hisar. Police sources claimed that dera followers fired the first shot. The Army, which was called out by the district authorities, reached Sirsa in the evening. Thousands of premis were in the dera when the Special CBI court pronounced its verdict. Nearly 5,000 followers started moving in vehicles and on foot to Sirsa, 9 km from the dera headquarters, and damaged a Vita milk plant and a power substation on the way. However, they were confronted by the police and paramilitary forces at a barricade set up 2 km ahead of the town.

First, the forces fired teargas shells to disperse the dera followers but they regrouped and again started moving towards Sirsa town. The police opened fire after a dera follower fired a gunshot at them. The police said the dera followers tried to break the wall of a factory to enter the town. 

The reporter of a news channel was hurt in an attack by angry dera followers on their OB van around the dera headquarters.

Earlier, dera head Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh set out by road for Panchkula from Sirsa. His cavalcade comprising around 200 vehicles started around 8.30 am from the Dera Sacha Sauda headquarters. The road connecting the dera to the National Highway-9 in Sirsa district was cleared of all traffic.

The cavalcade comprised eight SUVs with tinted glasses and it was not known in which vehicle Gurmeet Ram Rahim was travelling. Many followers tried to stop the cavalcade by lying in front of it. Earlier, the dera chief kept the authorities on tenterhooks throughout the night as to when and how he would leave for Panchkula.

Meanwhile, Dera Sacha Sauda spokesperson Dr Dilawar Insan said, “Injustice has been done to us. We will go in for appeal against the order. History is replete with instances where social reformers have been crucified like this. The dera stands for welfare of humanity.” He appealed to all to maintain peace. 


Will pay relief in a week: CM

Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar today announced that the state government would provide full compensation within a week to those persons whose property was damaged during violence after the verdict against Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh. Khattar said a web portal would be created wherein claimants could enter details regarding their damaged property, including vehicles and OB vans.

Uneasy calm in K'shetra, Jind

Uneasy calm prevailed in Kurukshetra and Jind districts on Friday. However, no untoward incident was reported from the two districts. The district authorities said the highways and public properties were being monitored closely. After the CBI court judgment, shopkeepers in several markets across Kurukshetra city shut their shops. The Deputy Commissioners of Jind and Kurukshetra said activities at the Naam Charcha Ghars were being watched. 

Tension grips Hisar

Tension gripped Hisar town soon after a Special CBI court in Panckula on Friday held Dera Sacha Sauda head Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh guilty in a rape case. However, the situation remained peaceful. The police and paramilitary forces held a flag march in the town.  A small group of Dera followers, mostly women, gathered at Uttam Dharamshala in the Padao locality of the town. The  police sealed the dharamshala and evicted the followers. 

Premis urged to honour verdict

Besides the deployment of para-military personnel on the Delhi-Sonepat border point at Kundli on the GT Road, a team of the district administration team led by DC KM Pandurang remained on the road last night to ensure that dera followers from Delhi did not enter the district on their way to Panchkula.  "The situation in the district has remained peaceful and every precautionary measure has been taken for maintaining law and order," the DC said. 

"The situation was largely under control and peaceful in the district till Friday evening. However, the night will be crucial" Senior government officer


District Watch

Ambala

Ambala Deputy Commissioner Sharandeep Kaur Brar  has ordered that all educational institutions in the district will remain closed on August 26. Sonepat Deputy Commissioner K. Makrand Pandurang has said a control room has been set up where people could provide any information at telephone number 0130-2221500.

Palwal

The Palwal district administration has also issued orders that all educational institutions, including government, government-aided and private schools, and B.Ed. College, NCC units and district and sub-divisional libraries will remain closed on August 26.

Rohtak

The Rohtak district administration has ordered that all government and private schools, colleges and other educational institutions will remain closed on August 26. Academic activities in Maharshi Dayanand University have been suspended from August 26 to 28.

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