- Reliance Industries Limited seeks government intervention after facing vandalism
- Reliance also tells the court it has no plans of entering corporate farming
- More than 1,500 telecom towers of Jio in Punjab alone were vandalised
On Monday, the Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) approached the Punjab and Haryana High Court seeking protection from the government of its assets and services in these 2 states against “miscreants” who had damaged many of it telecom towers a few days ago.
The telecom towers were vandalised allegedly by the farmers who are angry over the company’s perceived role in framing the three agricultural laws which were recently passed by Parliament.
The farmers vented their anger by breaking the power supply, cutting the cables of the telecom towers and also damaging other infrastructure of Reliance Jio.
Apparently, the culprits saw the Jio, owned by Mukesh Ambani, as one of the major beneficiaries of the 3 farmer laws which were passed back in September.
Over the month, thousands of farmers came in front to protest against the 3 farm laws as they feel they are detrimental to their long term interests.
Out of the 9,000 Jio telecom towers in Punjab alone, more than 1,500 were put out of operation by the alleged farmers in December. A person from the company had said that these “towers had taken a hit due to physical damage, power disruption or theft of generators.”
Chief Minister of Punjab, Captain Amarinder Singh condemned the incident with stew words and also issued a stern warning against such vandalism. He asked the Punjab Police department to act strictly in such cases.
Having said this, as of today, not a single case has been filed in connection to this incident, let alone arrests being made.
On Monday, through Reliance Jio Infocomm, RIL moved to the Punjab and Haryana High Court and is seeking urgent government intervention to “bring a complete stop to the illegal acts of vandalism by miscreants”, as oer the statement issued by RIL.
While it thanked the authorities for their action against miscreants so far, it also “sought punitive and deterrent action against miscreants and vested interests”.
The statement from Reliance Industries Limited read, “These acts of violence have endangered the lives of thousands of its employees and caused damage and disruption to the vital communications infrastructure, sales and service outlets run by its subsidiaries in the two states”.
The statement also said, “The miscreants indulging in vandalism have been instigated and aided by vested interests and our business rivals.”
As per the company, these vested interests are taking advantage of the agitation of the Indian farmers in launching an “incessant, malicious, and motivated vilification campaign against Reliance”.
The company has clarified that it has nothing to do with the 3 farm laws as it has no interest in corporate or contract farming which has been the chief reason for agitation among the farmers.
The statement said, “Reliance Retail, Reliance Jio Infocomm, or any other affiliate of our parent company, ie, Reliance Industries have not done any ‘corporate’ or ‘contract’ farming in the past, and have absolutely no plans to enter this business”.
The company has denied any purchase of land in Punjab or even in Haryana with that purpose in mind.
RIL said, “We at Reliance have immense gratitude and the greatest respect for India’s kisans, who are the ‘anna data’ of 1.3 billion Indians,” in the statement.
The statement from Reliance Industries Limited comes on the same day when the government was scheduled to hold talks with the protesting farmers in New Delhi.
The RIL statement came on a day the government was scheduled to hold talks again with the protesting farmers in New Delhi.