Agnipath protest: Several states on high alert ahead of Bharat Bandh

The Bandh has been called for after the service chiefs announced that the scheme won't be rolled back.

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Monday, June 20, 2022, 10:43 AM IST
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Agnipath protest: Several states on high alert ahead of Bharat Bandh | PTI

After the announcement of the Agnipath recruitment scheme more than 10 states witnessed protests. Now, on Monday a nationwide Bharat Bandh has been called for by some groups. The Bandh has been called for after the service chiefs announced that the scheme won't be rolled back.

“The Indian Army's foundation lies in discipline. There's no space for arson or vandalism. Every individual will have to give a certificate they were not part of protests or vandalism. Police verification is mandatory, no one can join without it,” said Lieutenant General Anil Puri, additional secretary, department of military affairs, on Sunday at a key presser.

Preparation by the states for Bharat Bandh on Monday

Punjab

The Punjab Police was directed to be on alert in view of the possible Bharat Bandh on June 20 against the newly launched Agnipath Scheme for recruitment in the military, informed the officials on Sunday.

Instructions were also given to increase security around all the big military coaching institutes of Punjab.

Haryana

The decision comes after various parts of the country witnessed protests against the scheme of the government while some states reported violent incidents. Earlier, Faridabad police had tightened security amid a call for Bharat bandh.

"All preparations related to security arrangements have been completed by the Faridabad Police in terms of law and order on the call for Bharat Bandh. Law and order in Faridabad is completely tight. For this, elaborate security arrangements were made by putting up various police checkpoints in Faridabad," said the police on Sunday.

Jharkhand

All schools in Jharkhand will remain closed on Monday in the wake of the "Bharat Bandh" called by certain organisations, the state education officials informed.

Secretary of Education Department, Rajesh Sharma, said the decision has been taken as a precautionary measure.

"In the wake of the Bharat Bandh called by certain organizations, all schools in Jharkhand will remain closed tomorrow, June 20. The decision has been taken as a precautionary measure," Sharma, said.

The Union Cabinet on June 14 approved a recruitment scheme for Indian youth to serve in the three services of the Armed Forces called Agnipath and the youth selected under this scheme will be known as Agniveers.

UP

Amid a call for 'Bharat Bandh' on Monday over the Agnipath scheme, the Gautam Buddh Nagar police on Sunday reiterated that CrPC section 144 is imposed in the district and asked people to not engage in any activity which disrupts law and order.

The police's appeal came even as a group of ex-servicemen submitted a memorandum with authorities demanding strict against "anti-social" elements involved in the violence during protests against Centre's new scheme for recruitment of soldiers in the Army, Navy and Air Force.

So far, 225 people have been booked and 15 arrested in connection with the violent protest at the Jewar toll plaza on the Yamuna Expressway in Greater Noida on Friday.

Eight police personnel and a bus driver were injured in the violence, according to officials.

CrPC Section 144 prohibits assembly of four or more people Additional Deputy Commissioner (Law and Order) Ashutosh Dwivedi on Sunday said several anti-social elements have mixed with aspirants of armed forces during the protests against the Agnipath scheme to disrupt law and order and vitiate atmosphere across Uttar Pradesh.

"It has been learnt through social media that a call for 'Bharat Bandh' has been made by a section of people for June 20 in view of the Agnipath scheme and some anti-social elements in groups may to disrupt peace and even try marching towards Delhi," Dwivedi said.

"It is to remind everyone that CrPC section 144 is already imposed in Gautam Buddh Nagar commissionerate. FIR would be registered against any person found engaged in activities in violation of law and strict action would be taken against them," he said.

Kerala

Kerala police on Sunday said its entire force would be on duty to arrest anyone engaging in violence or destruction of public property. State police chief (SPC) Anil Kant issued guidelines to the personnel to prevent violence against the public as well as forced closure of businesses, a release issued by the State Police Media Centre said.

The SPC directed district police chiefs to ensure protection to courts, KSEB offices, KSRTC, private buses as well as government offices and institutions on June 20, it said.

Besides that, police would also be putting up pickets and patrolling important locations from tonight, the release said.

It further said Kant directed the district police chiefs to coordinate the security arrangements through the Range DIGs and Regional IGs and that the Law Department has ordered strict action against those resorting to violence.

Karnataka

The Karnataka Police are on high alert mode as the intelligence agencies have warned that protests on the Agnipath scheme might break out during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's public rallies in Karnataka.

Modi is visiting the state for a 2-day tour after one-and-a-half years. He will arrive at the Bengaluru Yelahanka Indian Air Force Base at 11.55 a.m. on Monday. Modi will participate in 10 programmes organised in Bengaluru and Mysuru cities, including the International Yoga Day on June 21.

The state police department taking no chances has deputed more than 10,000 police personnel to ensure no untoward incident takes place during the Prime Minister's programmes according to sources. The focus would be on the Kommaghatta public function where PM Modi is addressing a massive rally.

The sources said that the protesters on the pretext of BJP workers might enter the venue in Kommaghatta where PM Modi is addressing a massive rally and stage a protest condemning the Agnipath scheme. Several organisations have given a call for protest against the Agnipath scheme.

Bihar

In view of the Bharat Bandh called by some organisations as a protest against the Agnipath recruitment scheme, security personnel was seen deployed across Patna as a precautionary measure on Monday.

The Union Cabinet on June 14 approved a recruitment scheme for Indian youth to serve in the three services of the Armed Forces called Agnipath and the youth selected under this scheme will be known as Agniveers.

Meanwhile, security has been beefed up in several states on Monday amid protests against the Centre's new Agnipath recruitment scheme.

Due to ongoing students' agitation against the Centre's Agnipath scheme across the nation, eight trains were cancelled and six trains have been rescheduled in the east zone, said East Central Railway on Sunday.

(Witn input from agencies)

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