Jaipur: Rajasthan remained in the news in 2011 mostly for wrong reasons -- communal violence in Bharatpur, death of 16 women in hospitals due to contaminated IV fluids and the sensational missing case of Bhanwari Devi -- bringing embarrassment to the Ashok Gehlot government. (Agencies)
Gopalgarh, a town in Bharatpur district, witnessed clashes between Gujjars and Mev Muslims following a land-related dispute which claimed 10 lives and left several others injured. Rights activists and Muslims alleged that all the 10 people were killed in police firing while they were offering namaz at a mosque, but the government insisted it was the timely action of police that brought things under control.
The Bhanwari Devi missing case hit the Gehlot government hard and claimed the ministerial berth of Mahipal Maderna, a second time MLA and son of veteran Congress politician and influential Jat leader Parasram Maderna.
The 36-year-old nurse, posted as ANM at Jaliwada sub-centre in Jodhpur district, went missing on September 1 and was alleged to have been abducted at Maderna's behest.
Left embarrassed, the government also ordered a CBI inquiry.
Sixteen women died in Jodhpur's government hospitals between February 13 and March 14 due to administration of contaminated IV fluid.
Amin Khan had to resign as Minister of State for Panchayti Raj and Waqf in February for his derogatory remarks against President Pratibha Patil. At a public function he had said that Patil was rewarded with the post of president for her loyalty to the Gandhi family. Khan was re-inducted during the first Cabinet reshuffle in November when Gehlot regrouped his team by inducting six new faces and dropping five from his ministry.
In an incident that highlighted poor law and order situation and laxity of police in Sawaimadhopur district, a police inspector was burnt alive by a mob which went berserk after a youth Rajesh Meena, who was protesting against police inaction in arresting a murder case accused, jumped to death from an overhead water tank.
Bhanwar Singh, son of Congress MLA Nathuram Sinodia, was abducted from Kishangarh town of Ajmer and shot dead by his business rivals.
Both these killings rocked the state legislative assembly which also witnessed a new low when BJP legislator Bhawani Singh Rajawat flung a sandal towards Congress members during a sitting which resulted in his suspension from the house for a year.
In the Vidhan Sabha, former Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje made a comeback as Leader of Opposition after one year, in March. She had to quit as the Leader of Opposition in 2010 for poor performance in state assembly and parliamentary polls.
Jaipur lost its last titular Maharaja Brig Sawai Bhawani Singh, a Mahavir Chakra recipient, in August following multi-organ failure. The 80-year-old Singh was the stepson of former Jaipur Rajmata late Gayatri Devi.
The year 2011 began on a positive note as the Gujjars called off its 17-day-long stir following the government's assurance to them that it will expedite efforts within constitutional limits to get their demands (mainly reservation in government jobs) fulfilled. Killing of three chinkaras, a protected animal, in an army camp in Barmer in November invited the wrath of animal lovers, particularly people from the Bishnoi community.
The Gehlot government, which completed three years in December, launched several programmes and schemes.
Implementation of Rajasthan Public Service Guarantee Act to ensure time-bound delivery of 108 services of 15 government departments and making available free generic medicines in all the government hospitals and Janani Shishu Suraksha scheme were among them.
Ministers in the state also gave up their discretionary powers on directions of the Chief Minister.
They also disclosed their assets and liabilities on the official website and later the government made it mandatory for bureaucrats to make available details online in order to bring transparency.
In another development, BJP MLA Hanuman Beniwal was suspended from the party for his remarks against Vasundhara Raje and other party leaders.
Jaipur: Rajasthan remained in the news in 2011 mostly for wrong reasons -- communal violence in Bharatpur, death of 16 women in hospitals due to contaminated IV fluids and the sensational missing case of Bhanwari Devi -- bringing embarrassment to the Ashok Gehlot government.