A host of Congress leaders including Rahul Gandhi and former Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda on Saturday appealed for peace in Haryana which remained on the boil as the Jat quota stir unleashed fresh incidents of violence and arson.
"I appeal to people of Haryana to maintain peace and brotherhood. Mutual harmony and dialogue can alone resolve any issue," the Congress Vice President said on micro-blogging site Twitter.
Speaking to reporters, Hooda spoke in similar vein but steered clear of questions as to who was responsible for the deteriorating situation.
Appealing to Haryana government to find an early resolution to the crisis, he said some forces were bent on damaging the social fabric. "I do not want to speak on politics. The need of the hour is to bring peace. Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi are also keen for peace to return," he said.
Meanwhile, curfew was clamped in Jind, Hisar and Hansi districts.
The authorities clamped curfew in Jind in view of some violent incidents that included setting afire three Haryana Roadways buses int he district by agitating Jats.
Army, paramilitary and police conducted a flag march in Jind, where incidents of violence were reported from various places including Julana, Uchana and Pilukhera.
Curfew has been imposed from 8 PM to 6 AM in Hisar and Hansi as a precautionary measure.
Earlier today, the Sonipat district administration had clamped curfew in the city and Gohana town of the district.
Curfew has now been imposed in at least eight towns in Haryana in the wake of incidents of violence during agitation.
Curfew had already been clamped in Rohtak, Bhiwani and Jhajjar towns.
Haryana CLP leader Kiran Chaudhary also spoke in similar vein. She wanted the state government to open a dialogue with the agitators to calm down the situation.
Surjerwala also attacked the BJP and the RSS for the situation, saying "I am pained to say that while the BJP and RSS are conspiring to divide the nation through communalism and regionalism, they are also engaged in an obnoxious conspiracy of dividing Haryana on caste lines."
He said by making controversial and unnecessary statements everyday, the ministers, MPs and MLAs of BJP have created the current provocative situation. "The BJP government has totally failed to solve it after creating the problem," Surjewala alleged.
Asking the BJP government in Haryana and Modi government at the Centre "to refrain from divisive politics", Surjewala called for effective steps, advising the government to follow its 'rajdharma'.
As violence continued during Jat quota protests, the Centre on Saturday asked the Haryana government to provide security to people and property by ensuring law and order.
This was conveyed by Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha to Haryana Chief Secretary DS Dhesi and DGP Yashpal Singhal at a meeting held through video conferencing.
"The Cabinet Secretary reviewed the prevailing situation in Haryana and took inputs from the Chief Secretary and DGP. He asked them to ensure protection to people and property by maintaining law and order," a senior government official said.
Union Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi and others senior officers were present in the meeting.
Western Railway (WR) today announced cancellation of eight trains that were scheduled to pass through the affected region.
Also, fifteen mail services were short-terminated and five other trains diverted today, a statement issued by WR said.
The trains that were cancelled are: 12926 Amritsar-Bandra Paschim Express, 22926 Kalka-Bandra Terminus Paschim Express, 12472 Shrimata Vaishnodevi Katra-Bandra Terminus Swaraj Express, 12217 Kochuveli-Chandigarh Sampark Kranthi Express, 12450 Chandigarh-Madgaon Goa Sampark Kranti Express, 12920 Jammu Tavi-Indore Malwa Express, 12215 Delhi Sarai Rohilla-Bandra Terminus Garib Rath Express, 12957 Ahmedabad- New Delhi Swarna Jayanti Rajdhani Express.
The trains that were short-terminated are: 12925 Bandra Terminus–Amritsar Paschim Express, which had set off on February 19 terminated at Sonipat; 22451 Bandra Terminus-Chandigarh Superfast Express was terminated at Narela; 12449 Madgaon-Chandigarh Goa Sampark Kranti Express terminated at Hazrat Nizamuddin and 12471 Bandra Terminus-Jammu Tavi Swaraj Express terminated at New Delhi.
Those diverted include: 12216 Bandra Terminus–Delhi was diverted via Alwar-Mathura junction, 14322 Bhuj-Bareili diverted via Alwar-Mathura Junction, 14321 Bareili-Bhuj diverted via Old Delhi-New Delhi-Hazrat Nizamuddin-Mathura Junction route, the WR said in the statement.