Gujjars won't go hungry

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Old 29-May-2008
Gujjars won't go hungry

PILUPURA/BAYANA: If the army and the state government thought they could stop supplies to the Gujjars and force them to give up their fight, they got it horribly wrong. Food keeps pouring in at regular intervals. And there’s enough to ensure that the thousands of Gujjars assembled here with Col Kirori Singh Bainsla (retd) won’t go hungry.

Everyone’s unanimous on this point: “Let the administration try and cut off our food supplies. We have enough to last us for a while.”

Keeping the supply lines alive are the villages that dot the region. Most are Gujjar villages and they won’t let their men down. “This is a lesson they learnt from the last agitation. Last year, they ran out of food. So, this time, they chose this place as it is surrounded by Gujjar villages and they are constantly supplying food,” said a local.

Even on Wednesday, tractor loads of chapatis, onion and pickles, even bundis, kept pouring in. “There are scores of mahajans who keep sending the stuff. Some of them have given quintals of wheat. In fact, the bundis are a gift of the Jats. It’s ‘seva’ that they are all doing,” said one of the agitators.

But the army is also trying hard. On Wednesday, jawans seized a few tractors and blocked some roads from villages where the supplies are pouring in.

That, however, has not made much difference. With every passing day, the food packets seem only to be getting better. If in the first few days the chappatis came without any cover in tractors, on Wednesday they came wrapped in plastic with a vegetable and pickle carefully packed inside. The villagers are also making sure that the agitators get their daily quota of milk and chaach . Almost any tractor that comes in, is loaded with at least 500 packets of food.

The scene is not very different at Sikandara in Dausa. Heaps of food have been piled on verandahs of closed shops while tractor-loads of ice-cold milk, chaach keep pouring in.

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