Dera Chief Sentence: Rohtak Turns into Fortress

Chandigarh: Ahead of the pronouncement of the quantum of sentence for Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, Rohtak town in Haryana has been turned into a fortress today.

Elsewhere in Haryana, Punjab and Chandigarh, security has been intensified to deal with any untoward situation.

CBI judge Jagdeep Singh will be flown to Rohtak district jail in Sunaria where he would pronounce the quantum of punishment against the Dera chief, whose conviction on August 25 led to violence in Punjab and Haryana, particularly in Panchkula and Sirsa towns.

On the directions of Punjab and Haryana High Court, a special court has been set up in the rest house inside the Rohtak district jail to conduct court proceedings around 2.30pm today.

Rohtak Deputy Commissioner Anil Kumar said that Dera followers would not be allowed inside Rohtak and security forces would open fire if they try to force their way to enter the town.

Rohtak range Inspector General of Police Navdeep Singh Virk said that vehicles entering Rohtak from Delhi side have been diverted and would not pass by Sunaria jail.

All train and bus services bound for the town would remain suspended today to prevent Dera devotees from entering Rohtak.

Security forces are on high alert and barricades have been set up at sensitive locations in Haryana, Punjab and Chandigarh.

In Punjab, security has been put on high alert in the Bathinda zone of Malwa region where the Dera has a sizeable followers.

A total of 48 companies of paramilitary forces, four companies of Rapid Action Force (RAF) and seven companies of Punjab Armed Police and commandoes have been deployed in Bathinda, Mansa, Muktsar and Faridkot districts.

As many as 9,000 security force jawans have been deployed in the tricity, comprising Panchkula, Chandigarh and Mohali and all vehicles were thoroughly checked at the border before they were allowed inside the tricity.