Jat quota protest
Delhi-based woman files FIR against 7 for gangrape during Jat quota stir Picture: Jats stage a demonstration seeking Special Backward Class (SBC) status in Rohtak, Haryana on Feb 19, 2016IANS

Reports of rape during protests by Jats demanding reservation were false, said Haryana Director General of Police Yashpal Singhal Thursday.

On Wednesday, The Tribune reported that women passengers were dragged out of cars and raped in the fields in Murthal, Haryana, after their cars were attacked on the national highway. The report said that at least 10 women were raped by groups near the Amrik Singh Dhaba, but police officers allegedly told the families to stay mum about the rapes as it would bring shame to their families.

Senior police officers and members of the National Commission of Women are conducting an investigation, while the Punjab and Haryana High Court took suo moto cognisance of the issue. Justice NK Sanghi had reportedly written to the acting Chief Justice for an independent probe to be conducted, reports Hindustan Times.

"Statements were taken, verification was done. It was found that these reports were incorrect. But if we receive complaints, we will investigate it. We will also ensure that stringent action is taken against culprits," ANI quoted Singhal Thursday.

Haryana Principal Secretary Devender Singh and IGP Paramjit Ahlawat are said to have interacted with people in the area. However, no victims or eyewitnesses have come forward in the investigation that started Wednesday.

"We talked to the people in the area, even those who were quoted in the report, but nobody told us about any sexual harassment by protesters," Superintendent of police (SP) Abhishek Garg told Hindustan Times.

According to the report, the incidents took place early Monday morning when commuters were returning to Delhi from various parts of Northern India.

The dhabha owner, Amrik Singh, who was questioned about the issues has denied incidents of rape, The Hindu reports. 

A resident of Kurad village, which has been mentioned in the report, said that he fed women who were hiding in the fields, but nobody complained of sexual assault.

The Jat community in Haryana protested for 10 days until their demand for Other Backward Classes (OBC) quota was accepted by the state government. The protests turned violent as mobs set fire to public and private property between Friday and Monday. The Munak canal, which provides almost half of Delhi's water supply, was also damaged and repair work is expected to be completed in around two weeks. As many as 18 people died during the violent protests and losses have been pegged at Rs 34,000 crore in the state. 

[1 lakh = 100,000 | 1 crore = 10 million | 100 crore = 1 billion]