Maratha reservation row: Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, and his deputies Devendra Fadnavis and Ajit Pawar on Monday held a press conference to pacify the ongoing stir triggered after a clash between police and protesters during a demonstration over Maratha reservation demand.
Fadnavis said a high-level probe will be conducted and the accused will be punished. I can’t support lathi charge, he added.
Targeting former CM and Shiv Sena (UBT) chief Uddhav Thackeray, Fadnavis asked him why he did not bring an ordinance to override Supreme Cout’s stay on Maratha reservation.
“I had heard the speech of Thackeray who went to Jalna. He said that it (reservation) should be implemented as soon as possible. But Thackeray had also been the CM, so why did he not take the decision? This is pure politics. The public itself responded to those who went there and are doing politics,” he added.
A law was made in 2018, the High Court recognised it, the matter went to the Supreme Court, a stay came in 2020 and in May 2021, the Supreme Court cancelled the Maratha reservation, the BJP leader explained.
Thackeray is speaking now, but when he was in power, why did he not bring an ordinance, asked Fadnavis.
“The same support given to OBCs was given to the Maratha community. Maratha community was given a loan of Rs 5 thousand crores. Helped through Sarathi organisation and arranged hostels,” The Deputy CM asserted.
Protesters call for Kolhapur bandh
Maratha activists called for Kolhapur city bandh on Tuesday giant the police lathicharge on the protester in Jalna.
17 cases filed in Jalna district in connection with Protest
17 cases were filed in Jalna district in connection with the violence, said Maharashtra Police officials. A total of 3,181 people have been booked in 7 police stations, official added.
Till now 42 protesters have been arrested by the police in connection with violence and stone pelting, they said.
The reservation in jobs and education provided by the state government to the Maratha community was quashed by the Supreme Court in May 2021, citing the 50 per cent ceiling on total reservations among other grounds. Following this, a sit-in hunger strike, led by activist Manoj Jarange, over the demand for the Maratha reservation, began on August 29. However, the agitation turned violent on Friday after the authorities tried to shift him to a hospital. According to police, around 40 police personnel and some others were injured in the violence. The protesters pelted stones and torched at least 15 state transport buses and some private vehicles.