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Jat demonstration turns Haryana into a War Zone

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Rohtak: Shops and malls looted, market areas devastated; Haryana’s Rohtak town turned into a ghost town in mere three days. With Jat people’s demonstration for reservation in government jobs and academic institutes, the area resembles a war zone as troops and security forces patrol the area.

Be it the markets in Rohtak, located just 75 km from national capital Delhi, or Jhajjar or Bhiwani, or buildings and roadways buses in the violence-hit areas of Haryana, everything looks like they are in a war zone.

“The losses of traders and businessmen could run into hundreds of crores due to this mindless violence. This is no way to seek reservation in a democratic set up. There is hardly any sign of Haryana Police in the last one week. The government has abandoned people to fend for themselves,” Rohtak-based trader Rakesh Gupta told reporters.

Despite the army deployment in eight districts – Rohtak, Bhiwani, Jhajjar, Hisar, Jind, Kaithal, Sonipat and Panipat – and curfew imposed in five of them, unruly mobs have been on the rampage in several areas, especially in Rohtak and Jhajjar towns.

With hundreds of Jat youths taking control of the agitation and indulging in arson and looting, the focus of the Jat agitation, which was to demand reservation in government jobs and educational institutions, has led to the mindless destruction of government and private property.

“In Rohtak town, despite the army, the mobs looted several shops and set them on fire. No one stopped the mobs. There is total anarchy. We are stuck in our houses for four days. Our food supplies are finishing fast,” said Sarita Kumari, a housewife in Rohtak’s Civil Lines area.

Hooligans, who have joined the ranks of Jat demonstrators, have run amok by setting government and private property on fire, burning buses and private vehicles, blocking roads and highways, disrupting trains and uprooting tracks and indulging in looting and arson.

Be it police stations at some places, isolated railway stations, state transport buses and private vehicles and even railway coaches – immovable and movable property have been torched and damaged at several places.

With people in affected areas accusing the Haryana Police of inaction in the past one week, the state government is on the backfoot.

“A large number of police officials and personnel are from the Jat community. Many are refusing to act against the Jats since it is an emotional matter for them. The police is divided on this matter,” said a senior Haryana Police official told reporters in Chandigarh.

Haryana Home Secretary PK Dass said the police was being asked to control the situation.

“We have been conveyed the apprehension of Jat officials on taking action. We have issued strict directions to all officials. If they refuse to do so, they will face action,” Mr Dass told the media on Sunday.

Demonstrators uprooted the Delhi-Ambala railway track at Rajlu Garhi in Panipat district, disrupting the crucial rail line which connects Delhi with north India.

The NH-1 was blocked in Sonipat district, 50 km from Delhi, stranding thousands of people and hundreds of vehicles on the busy highway. (IANS)

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Witnessing Violence in Schools May Affect Kids’ Grades

The effect was the same for hidden or veiled violence, which included theft and vandalism

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Impact of violence makes children suffer academically
Impact of violence in the neighborhood, on children. Pixabay

Witnessing violence in high school may lead to emotional distress among children and affect their academic performance later, suggests a new research.

The findings, published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, suggest that schools should seek to empower bystander students who are not directly involved in acts of school violence, rather than giving them messages to stay uninvolved.

For the study, the researchers statistically tested the relationship between witnessing school violence in Grade 8 and subsequent anti-social behaviour (drug use, delinquency), emotional distress (social anxiety, depressive symptoms), and academic adjustment (school achievement, engagement) in Grade 10.

The research involved nearly 4,000 high-school students in Canada.

“There were several take-home messages. First, witnessing school violence in Grade 8 predicted later impairment at Grade 10. Second, bystander effects were very similar to being victimized by violence directly,” said study co-author Linda Pagani, Professor at University of Montreal in Canada.

Violence
Exposure to violence in schools may affect kids’ grades. Pixabay

The researchers examined different forms of violence and established the fact that witnessing major violence including physical assaults or carrying weapons is associated with drug use and delinquency later.

The effect was the same for hidden or veiled violence, which included theft and vandalism.

Witnessing minor violence (threats and insults) resulted in an increase in drug use, social anxiety, depressive symptoms, and decrease in engagement and participation at school, the findings showed.

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“Most students reported witnessing violence. It is clear that approaches to prevention and intervention should include witnesses as well victims and perpetrators and target all forms of school violence,” Michel Janosz of University of Montreal said.

“Supportive family and community relationships also prevent emotional desensitisation to violence which contribute to aggressive behaviour in youth,” Janosz said. (IANS)