Legislators across party lines protest in Mumbai supporting Maratha quota demand
The protesting legislators from the Ajit Pawar-led Nationalist Congress Party group, Shiv Sena (Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray) and the Indian National Congress demonstrated near the state secretariat in Mumbai.
Pro-Maratha reservation torch the office of a political party in Beed in the western Indian state of Maharashtra on Monday, October 30, 2023. (ANI Photo)
A GROUP of legislators from various parties staged a protest near the Maharashtra secretariat Mantralaya in state capital Mumbai on Wednesday (1) in support of the demand for reservation to the Maratha community.
Some of the lawmakers tried to lock the gate of Mantralaya saying they will not allow the administration to function until the Maratha community is granted reservation, police said.
The protesting legislators, from the Ajit Pawar-led Nationalist Congress Party group, Shiv Sena (Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray) and the Indian National Congress, sat on stairs of the secretariat building and displayed placards with messages supporting the reservation for Marathas.
They also demanded a special session of the state legislature over the Maratha quota issue.
Maharashtra chief minister Eknath Shinde had called an all-party meeting the same day to discuss the situation in the state amid the intensified Maratha quota agitation which took a violent turn in some parts of the state.
Incidents of violence were witnessed in many parts of the state in the last few days. State-run bus services have been suspended in five Marathwada districts while curfew and Internet shut-down were imposed in parts of Beed where the houses of political leaders were targeted by protesters on Monday.
The chief minister also appealed to people not to resort to violence and also asked political parties to avoid indulging in any activities that would worsen the situation.
The Maharashtra government published an order on Tuesday (31) asking officials concerned to issue fresh Kunbi caste certificates to eligible Maratha community members, paving the way for them to avail reservation benefits under the Other Backward Classes (OBC) category.
A government resolution (GR) asked the officials to translate old documents having references to Kunbis and written in Urdu and ‘Modi’ script (which was used to write Marathi language in earlier times). These documents are to be digitised, attested and then put in public domain.
(With PTI inputs)