Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh verdict today, Panchkula, Chandigarh tense, Army called out in Sirsa
Panchkula/Chandigarh: As Punjab and Haryana gear up for the verdict in the case against Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh on Friday, Chandigarh and Panchkula remained tense.
The Army was called out in Sirsa, even as security was tightened, with senior police personnel carrying out a flag march outside the sect headquarters, reported PTI.
While Ram Rahim Singh left Sirsa by road for Panchkula at 10am, the verdict is scheduled for 2.30pm in the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court.
More than 150,000 supporters of Ram Rahim Singh have reached Panchkula, not just from Punjab but even from Delhi and as far as Madhya Pradesh.
Hundreds of Dera Sacha Sauda followers and Singh’s disciples have been camping along pavements leading to the district court in Panchkula.
“There are plenty of followers who are still camping in the city and refusing to leave. The forces have been instructed to evacuate them in buses and drop them beyond the city limits, without the use of force or violence. If the high court declares it a failure of administration, then the CBI court hearing may get deferred to next week,” said a senior Haryana police official, on the condition of anonymity.
Nearly 55 companies of the central paramilitary forces have been deployed in Panchkula and the Army has been called in.
Also, 23 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) companies, each having 116 soldiers, have been recalled from Srinagar. The CRPF is equipped with teargas shells, pellet guns and chilli bombs, said officials.
“In case the situation gets mildly out of control, we will first fire teargas shells to disperse the crowd. If that does not work, we will resort to the use of chilli bombs,” said a senior CRPF on-ground official, on the condition of anonymity.
The CRPF will be accompanied by companies of the Punjab and Haryana police force, SWAT commandos and the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB).
While all internet as well as SMS services have been suspended, schools, colleges and offices have also been instructed to remain shut on Friday.
Even as shops remained shut, civilians in Panchkula are now on tenterhooks with essential supplies and ration running dry. Buses run by the Haryana and Punjab state department have also been suspended, while 28 trains to both states have been cancelled.
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