Chandigarh: The Jats on Sunday observed 'Black Day' across Haryana amid tight security arrangements, even as the agitation by the community passed off peacefully.
The traffic on the Hisar-Rewari rail route was disrupted for some time as the protesters squatted on the tracks near Ramayan village in Hisar district, officials said.
The Haryana Roadways also suspended its service from Hisar to Chandigarh, Jind, Panipat, Bhiwani and Gurgaon due to the agitation, they said.
The Black Day was observed at Panipat, Karnal, Kurukshetra, Kaithal, Gurugram, Hisar, Jhajjar, Fatehabad, Sirsa, Bhiwani, Dadri, Rewari, Faridabad, Palwal, Ambala, Yamuna Nagar and Mahendragarh.
A large number of protesters, including women and children participated in dharnas with black ribbons, turbans, caps and armbands to show their resentment against the government towards their demands.
Besides seeking quota in education and government jobs under Other Backward Classes category, the demands of the Jats include release of those jailed during last year's agitation, withdrawal of cases slapped during the protest and government jobs for the kin of those killed and injured while taking part in the stir. Traffic was diverted at some areas in sensitive districts of the state, officials said.
"No untoward incident was reported from any part of the day," they said. Yashpal Malik, president, All-India Jat Aarakshan Sangharsh Samiti (AIJASS), which is spearheading the protest, joined the protesters at Rohtak and Jind.
"The Manohar Lal Khattar government is doing injustice with Jats," Malik said, adding that the community members would not hold talks with the government's proposed committee as it had "no powers."
Internet services were also suspended at some sensitive places including Rohtak, Hisar and Sonipat. Sonipat District Magistrate K. Makarand Pandurang had issued orders to impose ban on internet services under Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code for 24 hours with effect from 5pm on Saturday till 5pm on Sunday.
The District Magistrate said the ban had been imposed to prevent people from misusing these services to spread rumours. Police also set up 'Nakas' on all roads leading to Rohtak town to prevent the entry of protesters and they have been asked to use the outer bypass of the town to reach the sit-in sites, officials said. Paramilitary forces are also keeping a strict vigil, officials said.
As many as 30 people were killed and property worth crores of rupees was damaged at many places in Haryana during last year's Jat stir which had turned violent. Rohtak and some of its neighbouring districts, including Sonipat and Jhajjar, were the worst hit by the violence.