Centre rushing 500 paramilitary troops to Hisar

RSTV Bureau

rampal_hisarAround 500 paramilitary personnel are being rushed to Haryana to deal with law and order situation at Rampal’s ashram in Hisar even as the Intelligence Bureau has warned that there could be more violence if police attempt to arrest the ‘godman’.

Responding to an urgent request of the Haryana government, the Home Ministry has dispatched the personnel to assist the state police which are facing violent resistance while trying to arrest Rampal.

“We are mobilising the force from nearby areas and they will reach the spot soon,” a Home Ministry official said.

Meanwhile, in a report submitted to the Home Ministry, the Intelligence Bureau said the situation at Rampal’s ashram continues to be tense and “there is all likelihood of further violence in case police attempt to get the ashram vacated and arrest Rampal”.

“In view of apprehension of retaliation by the inmates of the ashram, there is need for police to tread cautiously,” it said.

The report said around 12,000 followers are still inside the ashram. Though the police issued ultimatum to the inmates to vacate the ashram, the inmates have not relented and the standoff continues.

The vicinity of the Satlok Ashram in Barwala looked like a war zone, a day after clashes between the police and ‘private army’ of Rampal’s supporters, who allegedly indulged in firing and threw petrol bombs at security personnel.

Ruling out any talks with Rampal, authorities mounted pressure on him as sedition and other serious charges were slapped against him and several of his followers while bodies of four women were found in the ashram.

Haryana DGP S N Vashisht said Rampal is still inside the ashram and asserted that police will continue its “operation” till he is arrested for production before Punjab and Haryana High Court on Friday in a contempt case.

As authorities in Haryana mount pressure on ‘godman’ Rampal to appear before the High Court, Law Minister D V Sadananda Gowda on Wednesday refused to join the issue, saying law and order is a state subject.

“Law and order is a state subject. A direction has been issued by the (Punjab and Haryana) High Court, that needs to be implemented by the state government. It is not appropriate for me to comment at this juncture,” he said.

About 15,000 followers of Rampal were holed up in the ashram, out of which 10,000 have been evacuated.

Police registered fresh cases on Tuesday’s night against Rampal, ashram spokesman Raj Kapoor, another key functionary Purshottam Dass and several other followers under various Sections of the IPC.