Jobs For Relatives On 'Compassionate Grounds'; Installation Of Statues: Why Rajasthan Government Is Not Keen To Accept The Demands Of Pulwama Bravehearts' Widows

Swarajya Staff

Mar 10, 2023, 05:49 PM | Updated 05:49 PM IST

Congress leader Sachin Pilot with the wives of the slain soldiers.
Congress leader Sachin Pilot with the wives of the slain soldiers.

In the early hours of Friday, the widows of the three CRPF jawans who were killed in the 2019 Pulwama terror attack were removed from their protest site outside the residence of Congress leader Sachin Pilot in Rajasthan.

The police shifted the widows to hospitals near their respective residential areas. Their supporters were taken to the SEZ police station.

The widows had been protesting since February 28 and had launched an indefinite hunger strike six days ago.

They were demanding a change in rules so that their relatives, and not just children, could get government jobs on compassionate grounds. They also demanded the construction of roads and installation of statues of the bravehearts in their villages.

On Thursday, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot responded to their demands on Twitter, asking whether it would be appropriate to give jobs to other relatives of the fallen jawans instead of their children. He further questioned what would happen to the children of the soldiers when they grow up, and if it would be appropriate to trample upon their rights.

On Friday morning, BJP MP Kirodi Lal Meena went to the SEZ police station and said that the government would not be able to suppress the voice of the widows. He criticized the government for being afraid of three women and said that an autocratic and dictatorial government would be resisted with more force.

Later, Meena attempted to meet the wives of the soldiers but was stopped by Samod police in Jaipur district. He claimed that the police abused and manhandled him and questioned whether standing with the wives of soldiers was such a big crime that the government was behaving in such a manner with a people's representative.

According to news reports, the three widows wanted to meet the Chief Minister, Ashok Gehlot, as they were unhappy over non-fulfilment of promises made to them by the state government in 2019.

On their way to meet the CM, the three were manhandled and assaulted by the state police. They had been staging a 'dharna' for several days in Jaipur.

The widows of the Pulwama bravehearts then reached former Deputy CM, Sachin Pilot's residence. They alleged that since the state government had failed to keep its promises, and Chief Minister Gehlot was not meeting with them, their only recourse was to convey their grievances to the Congress high command.

Pilot urged the government to consider their demands sympathetically and take steps to resolve their problems, stating that if any modifications needed to be made to the regulations, the state government should do so. He emphasized that the matter concerned the family members of the soldiers, and their concerns needed to be addressed immediately.

Following their meeting with the senior Congress leader, Manju, wife of Rohtash Lamba, along with Madhubala, wife of Hemraj Meena, and Sundari Devi, wife of Jeetal Gurjar, sat in a dharna outside the main entrance of his residence.

The widows have demanded a written assurance from the Ashok Gehlot government that their demands will be met to end their protest.

However, the CM has been unrelenting and blaming the BJP for using widows for political gains.

(with inputs from PTI)

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