Haryana Cabinet decided to introduce a bill on the Jat reservation in the coming session of the state Assembly.
“A bill will be brought in the coming session of Haryana assembly,” state’s Education and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ram Bilas Sharma told reporters after a cabinet meet.
The meeting chaired by Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar took stock of the prevailing situation in the state due to the ongoing Jat quota stir.
Sharma said the date of the Assembly session was yet to be decided.
With violence continuing in the state, the minister said 16 people have died in the agitation.
He made a reference to the recent all-party meeting, which had been called by Khattar in the wake of the Jat quota stir.
“In the all-party meeting, the chief minister had told Congress and INLD members that the two parties should sit together and come out with a draft (on the reservation issue).
“We had said that from the government side we will bring a bill in the Vidhan Sabha after taking into consideration their draft,” said Sharma, who holds portfolio.
Sharma said that his party had yesterday announced setting up of a five-member committee under a senior union minister to examine the quota demand for Jat community in government jobs.
A committee headed by Union minister Venkaiah Naidu has been formed to look into the demand for reservation.
The committee under Naidu will have BJP vice-presidents Satpal Malik and Avinash Rai Khanna, besides Union ministers Mahesh Sharma and Sanjeev Balyan.
Regarding the situation in Haryana with reports of fresh incidents of violence in different parts, Sharma said “the cabinet took stock of the situation prevailing in Haryana”.
Sharma said, “as far as road transport is concerned, that is normalising.”
“Rail traffic on Delhi-Chandigarh track has resumed from Delhi to Rewari, Mahendergarh, Loharu, Bikaner, Alwar, Jaipur normal,” he claimed.
Asked that the financial loss due to the ongoing agitation that had been pegged at Rs 20,000 crore, Sharma said the state government has sounded the Centre about it.
“Exact figure can be arrived only once different departments will make full assessment about the damage, which will take some time,” he said.
On incidents of Jat versus non-Jat clashes being reported from some places, he said “whatever happened was unfortunate.”
Asked if the state government had “failed” to bring the situation under control, he said the government is taking steps while exercising restraint.
About clash between security forces and protesters in Sonipat district, he said, “It is true that in village Ladsoli in Sonepat, close to where water supply from Munak Canal head has been resumed to Delhi, a clash took place. We are talking to those who have blocked the national highway. IG, Paramjit Ahlawat, the Sonepat Deputy Commissioner and the Army is present there, they were trying to persuade the protesters.