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Tricolour hoisted for first time in Haryana village

Statesman News Service | Chandigarh |

Believe it or not, the national flag was unfurled in a Haryana village on Friday for the first time since Independence. During British rule in India, this village, Rohnat in Bhiwani district, was punished by the colonial rulers after several village residents sacrificed their lives in the first war on Independence in 1857.

The British rulers punished the village by stripping the entire population of their landholdings besides unleashing the tyranny on men who were crushed under road-rollers and blown away with cannons. Following this, residents of Rohnat didn’t celebrate even the Independence Day as well as Republic Day functions.

To break this trend, the Haryana Chief Minister (CM), Manohar Lal Khattar, had planned to unfurl the national flag in the village on previous Republic Day.

But for some reason, the programme was cancelled. The CM Khattar, however, finally unfurled the national flag in Rohnat on the occasion of Shaheedi Diwas after 70 long years.

As per the information available, residents of the village had fought the British in 1857 and liberated the prisoners by breaking the jails. Following this, the British army had attacked the village and killed many villagers.

On 20 July 1858, the entire 20656 bigha land and houses of the village were auctioned up. This land was bought by 61 people from five nearby villages in a bid of just Rs 8,000. The British government also issued a decree that in the future, this land should not be sold to residents of Rohnat.

At present, village residents have bought a few acres of land in the name of their relatives and settled the village again, but they feel that despite losing their everything for the country’s independence, they did not get that land. They therefore hold a grudge against the government.

Black flags were waived in 2010 in the village on the day of Independence Day in 2010. Following this, the administration had come into action and persuaded villagers for unfurling the flag. The CM, Khattar has now instructed officials to solve the problems of the village.

After unfurling the flag, the CM also unveiled the blue print of a martyr memorial in the village, laid foundation stone of bus queue shelter and announced to provide free WiFi facility in the village.

He said a web portal of the village will also be developed and it will have information of the village residents who sacrificed their lives for the country.