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Rajasthan: 13 killed, 100 injured in violence
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May 29, 2007 10:24 IST
Last Updated: May 29, 2007 22:15 IST

Thirteen people, including a policeman, were killed and at least 100 injured in clashes and police firing in three districts of Rajasthan on Tuesday during protests by the Gurjar community on a quota issue, after which the army was called out in two places.

State Home Minister G C Kataria said two policemen had gone missing in Dausa district but agitators claimed they had been killed and their bodies were in their custody. The missing police personnel were identified as Mohammed Yunus and Dungar Singh.

Highways linking Jaipur with Agra, Delhi, Kota and Sawai Madhopur were blocked by angry demonstrators and the Army was deployed on the badly-hit Jaipur-Dausa-Agra and Kota-Jaipur national highways.

The Army also staged a flag march on the Jaipur-Dausa highway where no traffic was being allowed.

The protestors pelted stones, set ablaze at least five buses of the state transport corporation near Kotputali on Jaipur-Delhi Highway and clashed with the police in Dausa, Karauli and Bundi districts as part of their 'chakka-jam' agitation. They were demanding that the Gurjar community be shifted from OBC to Scheduled Tribe category.

Seven persons were killed in Bundi district while six bodies were found from Peelplikheda-Patoli area, about 165 km from Jaipur, along Jaipur-Agra national highway in Dausa and in neighbouring Karauli, Kataria told a press conference.

Another policeman, identified as Deena Ram, was killed in a clash with the agitators in Bundi district, he said, adding that Bundi Collector S S Bissa sustained injuries in the violence.

Six bodies found in Gangapur city, Bayana and Mahua in Dausa and neighbouring Karauli district and seven bodies in Bundi, have been sent for postmortem, Kataria said.

At least 100 people, including 50 police personnel, sustain injuries in the clashes and were admitted to hospitals in Jaipur, Kota, Bundi, Dausa and Karauli and Agra in UP, he said.

Of the injured, four persons with bullet wounds, were admitted to the Sawai Man Singh hospital in the state capital while four policemen injured in clashes were also shifted here in a critical condition.

In a move to stem the protests, Army personnel were moved from Jaipur, Agra and Bharatpur to highways between Jaipur and Agra via Dausa and Bharatpur and between Kota and Jaipur.      

Six columns of the Army comprising 600 personnel were rushed in the afternoon from Jaipur to hold flag march on the national highway near Dausa, Kataria said, adding that the Army was also sent from Kota to Bundi. The total figure of Army deployment was not immediately available.

Army was also alerted in Alwar and Bharatpur areas to assist the civilian administration after protestors dug up roads and damaged national highways.

At least five state transport corporation buses were set on fire by angry demonstrators near Kotputali on Jaipur-Delhi highway, an official spokesman said.

Traffic was badly affected on roads linking Jaipur with Agra, Delhi, Kota and Sawai Madhopur and large number of people were stranded at various points.

Police earlier lathicharged, lobbed teargas shells and opened fire in Dausa and Bundi city to disperse the activists belonging to Gurjar Action Committee.

Kataria parried queries with regard to causes of death saying that they would be known only after postmortem.

As the protestors attacked the police force outside Devnarayan Temple and other areas in Bundi, at least 50 policemen were injured, the minister said giving details of the incidents.

Traffic jams were reported from several places in Dausa and Bundi districts.

Protestors also sat on railway tracks in Dausa, Alwar, Bharatpur and Bandikui sections, a North-West Zone Railway spokesman said, adding that the schedule of about a dozen trains was affected.      

The Jaipur-Delhi rail route via Bandikui (Dausa district) station was obstructed and the trains were diverted at either ends, the spokesman said.

The Ashram Express, Shatabdi Express, Bareili Express and Motihari-Porbandar Express, besides goods trains on the Ajmer-Kishanganj, Rewari-Alwar and other routes were hit and were being re-scheduled.

"The N-W Zone was planning alternative routes for passenger safety and travel," the spokesman said.

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