“Considering Haryana’s history, such a caste-war was never expected. Every event is interrelated, for instance, had the fight between two advocates in Rohtak not happened, the violence would not have taken the shape of an inter caste clash,” adds Kumar.
Rohtak remained the epicenter of the Jat stir with huge losses of public and private property. Senior Superintendent of Police Shashank Anand, who was called back from training on 29 February tells Tehelka, “What led the reservation stir into becoming a caste clash can be established only once the investigation is over and the report of the enquiry commission comes out.” Four people have died during the clashes in Rohtak, which includes Jat and non-Jats.
“The community under question constitutes 50 percent of Haryana Police,” says BJP MP Raj Kumar Saini. “Some officers from that community ransacked police stations and handed over weapons to rioters and promoted violence in the state.”
Anand does not deny such claims but prefers not to comment on mp Saini’s statement. He tells Tehelka, “We will look into these angles during the investigation.” However, still in defensive mode, Jhajjar SP says, “Invoking Gandhi, I maintain that the police has no caste.”
Many among the non-Jats are afraid that caste based violence may resurface during Holi. “We understand people’s fears,” says Anand. “Ground reports and the government will decide till when the Army will stay in the state. However, we are trying our best to restore normalcy.”
The general mood in Haryana is that the Khattar government miserably failed to control the crisis in its initial phase. Victims accuse the state government of mishandling events and not dealing with it strictly.
The violence appears to have a pattern to it as no Jat houses or shops were damaged during the violence. Such wreckage could have been possible only when detailed information of addresses in localities guided the violent mob.
Several questions that emerge from the ruins of life in Haryana await the perpetrators of such heinous acts. Rambir, IITM security guard for one asks: “These glasses and properties will be restored but how will I bring back my father’s last souvenir — his cycles?”